“There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.”
― Paulo Coelho, Author of ‘The Alchemist’
Unfortunately, fear is an inevitable companion.
My daughter and I are completely obsessed with Australian Ninja Warrior. We are amazed with their strength, speed, agility and seemingly lack of fear to fly through the air from obstacle to obstacle.
I’m particularly in awe of this because I have a fear of falling and jumping. Even box jumps at the gym cause me to go completely into my head and expect the worst – I’ll trip over, I’ll miss the box, I’ll land flat on my face, I’ll break something, I’ll look like a fool, etc. etc.
The longer I stand looking at the box, waiting for courage and to feel confident about jumping on it, the worst that fear becomes. Some days, I build it up to the point that I end up doing step ups rather than box jumps (and, if it’s near the end of a work out, forget it – the combination of fear and complete physical exhaustion means a box jump is never happening!)
However, the days I suck it up and just jump on the box, I’m fine. I can complete the whole round of box jumps. I may not love it but I get it done.
Rationally I know my fear is crazy – all around me people are jumping up on the box, even ones higher than the mine. However, rationalising it doesn’t help. The fear won’t go away by thinking about it. The fear is only managed by me doing the damn box jump!.
You see, fear is an inevitable companion.
Too many people live their life holding off on taking a step towards their goal or dreams until they feel more confident or less scared. What happens is rather than their confidence going up and the fear going away, they find the fear doesn’t go away and their confidence doesn’t go up so they never take a step towards their goals and dreams.
Unfortunately, they’ve got it the wrong way around. Waiting for the fear to pass and confidence to grow is like waiting for the sun not to rise.
Fear is an inevitable part of who we are. It’s a part of our neurological system, the flight and fight response, that once helped us to survive but now limits our lives.
The fear won’t go away. Courage won’t just come to us. That’s because, confidence, or courage, is not the absence of fear, but the willingness to take action despite it. It’s not until you take action, despite how you are feeling about it, that you realise you actually have the courage and the ability within you, already. That’s how your confidence grows (want more on building confidence-go here).
So what’s your box jump?. What have you been staring at, thinking about and waiting to do once you feel more confident? And, how has this been impacting you achieving your goal?