I’ll be honest, something in me panics every time I have to step out and do something on my own, without approval, without knowing the answers, without control, without training.
Every. Single. Time.
Usually, my response is excess panic, emotion, stress, anxiety, fear, thinking a million steps ahead, thousands of ‘what ifs’, jumping all the steps straight to the result, pulse rate going into emergency mode, adrenaline pumping, rational thought gone, mind clouded, stress levels growing.
All together in my body in less than 10 seconds.
This panic is basically what stops me from being the best version of myself.
And it all comes from fear.
And this fear comes from not having control.
The problem? Fear and control.
There’s a part of me – of all us – which needs to be in control. For me, everything I am doing I need to know everything about it in order to do it, because I want to feel I can control the outcome. And because I’m afraid of losing control of anything in my own life.
I find it tough to risk. To step into the unknown. Which is why I procrastinate about taking steps into the unknown creatively, why I’ve been afraid to ask people out, why I’ve been afraid to risk.
Do you ever feel that way?
Knowing you need to risk, even desiring to risk, and step out in faith. Make a bold decision. But because you’re terrified, want to be in control, and overwhelmed with fear, you don’t know what to do. You panic. You get confused. And retreat back into what you know….so denying yourself the life you were made for.
So, what can we do? Well we’re all different, so different things may work for each of us. But here’s some steps I’m taking, which are helping me, and might help you too.
1) Acknowledgement – Acknowledge the little panic – it’s a subconscious thing, it’s there. Just recognise it. Acknowledge you are afraid of it. Acknowledge you are out of your comfort zone.
2) Take a step away from it for a moment. Breathe slowly. Don’t let it cloud your mind, don’t let panic come in.
3) Think rationally. What steps can you take to learn what you need to do or deal with what you’re about to go through. Who can you ask? What resources can you find? Who can you talk to?
4) Act. You’ll still be feeling the fear. Push through it. Take action anyway. Do he research you need to do, and learn, and then do it as best you can. Write that blog post. Apply for that job. Call that person and meet them, and just talk to them. Ask for prayer.
5) Believe in yourself. Have confidence. You are intelligent. You are gifted. You have lots of gifts. You are loveable. You belong. You matter. You’re enough.
6) You can’t and shouldn’t control everything. There are some things in life you can control, and others you can’t and shouldn’t. Suffering happens. Little annoying things happen. To everyone. Life can totally suck. And it’s bad, and it’s not fair, and it’s not just, and sometimes no one understands. But that’s life. We can’t control those things. Just recognise those things happen. To most of us. Not just me, and not just you.
7) And there are things we can control. More than we think. So pause, figure out what you can control, and what you can’t, and take hold of those things you can and take action. In each individual situation, and in life generally.
8) Remember you’re awesome. And you matter. As you are. (you can tweet that)
9) Do all the above. Starting now. Right now. Don’t forget it. Ever. Always come back to this. Don’t ever forget it, and put it into practice.
I’m going through this process myself right now. And it’s an ongoing process we have to go through again and again. You make progress, then you fall back. But you get up and keep going. One step forward is better than none.
Our lives doesn’t have to be how they were. We have the power to change it and be who you we were made to be.
Tomorrow can be different. Even today can be different.
It’s time to for us to change our today, and all our tomorrows.
Question For Reflection:
What can you do to today, to change your tomorrow?
Let me know in the comments below!
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(Pictures: Online Sources)
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