You will be judged (or you will be ignored). Those are pretty much the only two choices.
- Seth Godin
Okay. I’ll admit it.
I’m scared. Scared shitless, in fact.
I have a vision of where I want my life to be. I know what I am capable of, and it is so much more than I am currently living. Playing small has gotten me by, it has paid the bills, and it has kept me safe. But I am sick and tired of playing it safe. I am over being underwhelmed. And I am ready to take some big actions that I know will catapult my life to new heights. Seriously big, y’all. Bigger and Bolder than Ever.
That stubborn little voice within taunts me... reminding me of all the many ways in which I am likely to fail (or be judged). Do you have one of those? It tells me to wait just a little bit longer... wait until I am more equipped, less vulnerable, more developed in this and that. It asks me who I think I am to do such and such... it sends down torrential rains on my pride parade.
But it’s no longer fooling me. I know it’s just Fear rummaging through my closets... dressing up in all my clothes, pretending to know me better than I know myself. Fear is a wounded child... acting out, begging to be acknowledged and loved whole again. Don’t we all want that?
To My Dearest Fear:
I see you. I acknowledge that I am afraid. I am afraid of being seen for who I am, afraid of being called out as what I am not... and most afraid of being condemned for either. I am scared of being loved, hated, criticized, or elevated... deified or demonized... laughed at or serenaded... all of it, I am afraid of it all. Because either way, it means I am seen.
And that, my friends, is the fear at the heart of it all. Can I bare it all, be cast fully into the light, and accept the consequences of living out loud? Can you?
I do have a choice. I can keep my voice at a hush for fear of offending others. Or even just live peacefully within my close web of friends and family. There is nothing at all wrong with modest living... with simple joys and private celebrations. Nothing at all. But that’s not what I am here to do. It goes against the very fiber of my being. I am born for something that requires exposure... and there is no denying it.
So yes, I am afraid. But I’m gonna put my ass out there anyway.
I’m gonna to chase my dreams right through the dark... and into the spotlight.
one by one...
over... and over...
until I prove to Fear once and for all that there really is no dragon I that cannot slay.
Off, I go.
Respond to the Now, Release the How
Candice Schutter - theMessenger, June 2008
It is choice... that determines your destiny.
- Jean Nidetch
As a coach, I come across people everyday who are in a season of transition. Often I sit with a client as she weighs her options on the various aspects of her life. Be it venturing out on a new career path, taking a relationship to the next level, or rising from a season of depression, people come looking for a container of grace in which all facets of a situation can be seen more clearly.
Through experience, I have learned to trust in the power of language as a tool for transformation. The simple act of attending to our inner dialogue has the power to change the course of our thinking...and of our lives. When teaching exercises in conscious communication, I suggest we flag certain words in order to shift the flow of energy in our minds and hearts. This creates a reset function in our minds and can be the key ingredient to shift a mental construct for good.
Make Choices vs. Decisions
When I hear a client say, “I need to decide, and I'm just not sure what to do." It is then I know that choice is the medicine of the moment. To decide in a moment of ambivalence forces a false sense of finality to the present moment. I invite us to honor the now of our reality, rather than focusing on the how (which is a function of the future, taking us out of the moment). Sometimes when we feel pressure to make decisions (knowing how), rather than choices (knowing now), we inadvertently disempower ourselves. We make assumptions about the future and add unnecessary weight to our choices - assuming we know where each will lead us over time. We bind ourselves to a way of being that may serve us in the moment, yet not necessarily long-term. And, most of all, we rob ourselves of the freedom to experience the miracle that is a change of heart.
Choices are authentic, in-the-moment, and ever-changing... just as we are! To choose is to evoke the essence of self acceptance and allows room for growth. Choice is a privledge meant to evolve us towards more responsible expressions of who we are in the world. The highest choices are those that create more peace, love, and harmony in the world around us. We can decide to change the world, but can only happen one choice at a time.
So try this: practice presence. And if and when you feel the weight of decision upon you, choose what feels right in the moment instead. Respond to the now and release the how.
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