Don’t try too hard to read this! I wrote sloppy on purpose! It’s a little embarrassing! LOL
Today is the day I had set aside in my mind to launch my blog. However, I woke up to FEAR and ANXIETY.
I’m sure many people would think that I’m being overly dramatic or silly. It’s just a blog. Who cares? Right? Well, for a writer, any time we share our work, it is like sharing a piece of our soul with the world. People who don’t feel this way can write a paragraph in 5 minutes; share it; and not give a rip if people like it or not. This isn’t the case with me (or most writers that I know of). When we share what we write, it is very personal…and the internet is a vicious place.
And I’m not just sharing my writing, I’m going to be sharing my struggles. Struggles that I have already been judged for. So, yeah, for me, it’s actually scary to launch my blog.
Sure, I’ve done harder things (like raising kids, teaching, being married,…) but I LOVE writing. It has been my passion since I was a little girl. When I was in fourth grade, I turned an old chest of drawers into a secret writing desk by flipping a drawer upside down. Then I could sit in my closet and write for hours without anyone bothering me or judging what I wrote.
As a 46-year-old, I'm slightly less fearful of sharing my writing. Because at 46, I know people will judge me and I know how painful it can be. But I'm also learning to be OK with that. Lot's of things may hold me back, but I refuse to let fear be one of them.
Here are a few things that I have learned in my 46 years about how to deal with fears, (and what I actually did to deal with my fears today!)
I have a huge fear of public speaking. My fear was so bad at one time that I would have anxiety over teachers calling the roll. I failed my required public speaking class in college and almost dropped out of college rather than repeat it. Because of the sacrifice my parents were making to pay for me to be in college, I worked really hard to learn to deal with this fear. Thanks to a lot of prayer and some book that I’ve forgotten, I got an A when I repeated the class!
My fear of public speaking is still there though not as intensely. And, I oddly love public speaking now. I truly believe that my fear of public speaking helps me be a better speaker because, my fear pushes me to work harder when I am asked to speak. I can only be comfortable giving a speech if I feel super prepared. I think this is important. If I have the privilege of speaking to an audience, I’m glad that my fear makes sure that I share something worth saying.
Often, fear and anxiety can freeze us in our tracks when we start to obsess on them. When that happens to me, I like to remind myself of the Bible verse: whatever is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable- if anything is excellent or praiseworthy-think about such things. Philippians 4:8 (Which I paraphrase as "focus on the good stuff")
If you are focusing on things that are true, right, lovely, noble, and admirable, then you aren’t focusing on your fear!
7. Make a plan. You know fear is going to happen. Make a plan to confront it.
The picture beside this post, shows a t-chart I made of some of my biggest doubts and fears about starting this blog and the truth that I wanted to focus on instead.
8. Pray. To be honest, none of this wisdom comes from me being so self-aware and "with it". I pray a lot and I really try to listen to what God says to me. I know that he loves me and wants to help with all of my fears. I just have to learn to listen.
To practice this, I made the t-chart in the picture to the left. I wrote down my fears as they came to mind and I prayed for God to give me wisdom in how to confront that fear. I tried to quiet myself and listen. The items on the right are what I feel like he was telling me through the truths that came to mind. Most of these truths include actions.
For example, I'm extremely embarrassed that I have started blogs before and then my enthusiasm fizzled or I sank into ranting about politics (and not in a helpful uplifting way)! My action step is to remind myself of my purpose and how it helps people.
These are just a few ways that I'm continuing to grow in being free from fear.
I hope you are encouraged and a little freer from fear!
Thanks for reading!!! Please share!!!!!