I now know that great things can happen by simply owning your fears and admitting to the world, “I am scared.” That in itself can be a terrifying step to take.
I saw a great quote on Instagram from Caio Terra that fit yesterday so well:
“The people we surround ourselves with either raise or lower our standards. They either help us to become the best version of ourselves or encourage us to become lesser versions of ourselves. We become like our friends. No man becomes great on his own. No woman becomes great on her own. The people around them help to make them great.
We all need people in our lives who raise our standards, remind us of our essential purpose, and challenge us to become the best version of ourselves.”
Yesterday when I said, “I’m scared.” Here is what I heard in return:
“You are brave and you will do this.”
“If your safety net isn’t there, you’ll fall a little farther, land a bit harder, get up, dust yourself off, and get back at it.”
“You are strong and deserving so don’t be afraid..”
“Show them what you alone are capable of!”
“You’ve got this girl.”
“…You feel like Wonder Woman. A little beat up, sweaty, sore…but totally Wonder Woman. You got this!!”
“I imagine the regret of not doing it would far outweigh taking the leap and going on your own.”
“You are very brave.”
“Look behind you at the littered trail of broken molds and cleared hurdles.”
“You just have to force yourself to do it.”
“You must go.”
“You need to just go in there and do it.”
“Get yourself into class and feel foolish and fart and have victories.” (I laughed so hard at that one.)
I don’t know if I would have been able to conquer my fear without reading these words. I was terrified all day yesterday. The task in front of me consumed my thoughts all day. I was a mess. With each comment I read I found myself becoming even more nervous. Nervous because it had become clear that I HAD to do it. I was seeing so many people taking the time to say, “I believe in you.”
When we were kids “please” and “thank you” were deemed the magic words. I think we need to tell kids that “I believe in you” is magic. Because it really is. Cheesy as it sounds, that phrase, that feeling of having people believe in you, it makes you feel like you can accomplish anything. Like you have no choice but to at least give it a shot.
Last night was not easy.
In kickboxing, about 20 minutes into the class I rolled my ankle when I stepped back after a kick. It ended up not being too big of deal and I continued on with class, minus any kicking. Then about 30 minutes in I dropped the Thai pads at the wrong moment and took a hard kick right to face. To the freakin’ face. It honestly felt like the universe was telling me to go home. To give up. To go crawl in bed and hide under the covers.
I almost did. I almost cried out of frustration, my voice cracking when I said I was okay. I almost gave in to the embarrassment. I almost escaped. Hell, I almost ran out of there.
But, something changed when I took a few deep breaths and remembered that I had people that believed in me. I couldn’t let that go to waste. So when it felt like the universe was telling me to give up, I basically gave it the middle finger and continued on.
After kickboxing I walked up the stairs, put on my gi, and got on the mat. It sounds so simple. It wasn’t. Every step down those stairs and to the mat felt like it took every ounce of energy and willpower I had in me. I sat on the wall trying to figure out how in the world I was going to make it through this class alone.
“You are brave,” I said to myself.
Okay, it might have been more like: “YouarebraveYouarebraveYouarebraveYouarebraveOhshitOhshitOshitYouarebraveAllisonYouarebraveIcan’tdothisYouarebraveYouarebraveYouarebraveYouarebraveYouarecrazyYouarebraveYouarebraveYouarebrave…”
Everything went great. I had a partner that I had never partnered with. There was never a second of being uncomfortable with him. There were zero moments of anyone rejecting me. I had conversations with people left and right. I enjoyed drilling and felt like I was finally get the escape down. When I messed up I said, “Let me try that again.” When it was time to roll, I rolled with new people. I even asked people to roll. When I did have a small moment of feeling defeated, I told myself, “You got this!” I did not fart.
I took a leap without my safety net and survived. I even enjoyed it.
Yesterday showed me that my husband is not the only person who has my back. I realized yesterday that I have a lot of people that have my back. It might not be a “claim a fart for me,” kind of friendship, but I have a lot of people that will encourage me when I am struggling.
I’m always afraid that when people get to know the me, the fears that consume me, that they will laugh at me. That they will think I’m ridiculous for struggling with something that they don’t struggle with or understand, something that seems so simple. I fear that they will make me feel stupid for feeling that way.
Thank you for understanding that we all have our battles.
Thank you for knowing that what comes easy for you, might not for someone else.
Thank you for giving me strength to conquer my fears.
Thank you for having my back.
Thank you for believing in me.
Thank you for showing me that I AM braver than I once thought.