Motivation

You Will Never “Get Over” Fear

“Why aren’t you taking your dreams seriously?”

This isn’t the question I am posing to you (although I will later), it is the question I asked myself this morning.  It was followed by more questions:

“Why am I afraid to just leap? To just do it? To just try something? Anything?”

“Because I am afraid of being rejected,” I answered myself back.

Confession: Yes, sometimes I do talk to myself sometimes. Whatever. I bet you do it too.

Other more important confession: Even though I write frequently about getting past fear, I am sometimes paralyzed by it. And every time I push myself to get past it, to just leap, to just do something, it is an effing celebration.

Why?  Because I get scared. I get so scared of asking for what I want; I get scared of people telling me “no”  and thinking I am foolish; and I get scared of allowing myself to appear vulnerable.

Those are my deep fears. Those are the answers that creep out when I ask myself why I haven’t been taking my dreams seriously.

Fear is a bitch. And it’s not going anywhere. You have to learn to treat it like an annoying relative you can’t get rid of. You can bargain all you want, but if you want to get past it, you have to make the decision to “just do”.

In my experience, the secret to getting over fear is to realize you will never get over it. I will never get over the fear of being rejected. I may learn to tolerate it. I might find new and creative ways to deal with it, but at the core of my being, rejection scares the shit out of me.

And that is OK.

You will never completely stop being afraid of doing something, you just push yourself to do it anyway.  And you keep doing that over and over. You do it every single time you decide to take your dreams seriously.

Yesterday, I celebrated my one-year blogoversary (Happy Birthday Fab Life Project!)   In the one year that I have been writing publicly, I have gotten over fear exactly 76 times. I know this because WordPress tells me I have hit the “Publish” button 76 times to create content.

This means I have 76 pieces of proof that I am capable of pushing through fear.  I never know how my posts will be received. Hell, I don’t even know if they will be read, but I do it. I do it, do it, do it, and do it again because I love it, and I have something to say that I think is of value.

So, cheers to the 77th time I am getting over fear and taking my dream of creating a Gen Y community, seriously.
Now, it’s that time when I flip the question over to you:  why aren’t you taking your dreams seriously?

***If this message resonated with you, share it with the ones you adore.****

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8 comments

  1. Trudy 27 July, 2011 at 20:24 Reply

    Talk about well articulated! Go Amber! I feel the same way. Fear is just that hot mess emotion, but I’ve accepted that it is what it is. I find that repetition of courageous acts are the only way to overcome my fears. I do believe fear doesn’t go away, but when you keeping doing what you fear sometimes you can over come it or it will reduce. But in general fear is a constant. Life is all about how you choose to respond.

    • Amber J. 27 July, 2011 at 20:46 Reply

      Hi Trudy!

      The good thing about fear is that it lets us know when we really FEEL something. I find that I get the most fearful when I’m working on something major, or when I am about to put myself out there. Terrifies me. But darn it, I am determined to do it anyway!

  2. Pete 19 July, 2011 at 22:18 Reply

    Great post and great site, Amber! I take my dreams seriously, but my ability to SUSTAIN them has recently been tested to no end. Building my site with two kids and a small business that just (barely) pays the bills meant I had to stay up a lot of late nights (did I mention I knew practically nothing about Web site design or code?) It was ridiculous and took over four months, but I’m online with a goofy-looking site at http://www.stickit2man.com!

    Your courage in moving to NYC with practically nothing is TRULY inspiring. Congratulations on your blog-aversary!

    • Amber J. 24 July, 2011 at 10:02 Reply

      Thanks Pete!

      I love the concept behind your site. The most important is that you persisted and got your work out there. You can always change the site later!

  3. Cat 19 July, 2011 at 17:23 Reply

    “The secret to getting over fear is to realise you will never get over it.” SO true, Amber! I keep waiting to stop feeling scared being kind to a stranger or writing a new post but I still do … every single time. I always used to say “I couldn’t do what that person does because I’d be too scared.” Now I know that the doers are scared too, the difference is they do it anyway. Awesome post!

    Cat

    • Amber J. 24 July, 2011 at 10:01 Reply

      Isn’t it refreshing to know that you will never stop feeling scared? Do you read any Seth Godin? It’s our resistance factor at work when we get scared, but we just have to push through. Do it anyway!

  4. Caressa Rolle 18 July, 2011 at 13:49 Reply

    Wooow! I can honestly say that I am taking my dreams serious because http://www.lionesslessons.com is proof of it. But I still struggle with not putting as much effort into it because of guilt. I tell myself “oh this is a hobby” and not your career. I don’t treat it like a career, when in fact I know that I would love to empower women for the rest of my life. I need to start taking my dreams serious and treating it like a real 9 to 5. Hell, if I could grind for someone else….it should be no thing to grind for myself!!!!

    • Amber J. 18 July, 2011 at 20:24 Reply

      I looooooove that last line: “Hell, if I could grind for someone else….it should be no thing to grind for myself!!!!” That is so on point!

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