Reclaim Your Fearlessness

Reclaim Your Fearlessness

Rule your fear. Create the life you want.

What to do When Being Around People Becomes a Chore

Traveling around and visiting friends and family should be fun, right?

Right.

While it’s great seeing people you haven’t seen in a while, there are times when you are reminded why you don’t spend as much time with them in the first place.

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I have a friend I’ve known since high school. We’ve been through some good times and bad, so it’s natural we’re pretty close right? Not really.

I’ve found that being around with her is starting to be a chore to be honest.

She started her business a few years before I did and I’ve gotten to the point if I really wanted to quit my day job I would do just fine. She’s managed to survive on business from family and a few friends here and there. I’ve even tried helping out by helping her out with ways she can market herself (when asked of course).

You can guess how that went.

It finally dawned on me after meeting this person for dinner that I’ve gone beyond this friendship. It’s not that my friend is not a great person. It’s more that my values don’t align with theirs anymore. I feel guilty for being as successful every time I’m around her, and it lingers for a few days afterwards. 

In fact, when I told my friend all that I’ve accomplished in the last year or so, I got quieter and quieter when I spoke. When my husband nods at how proud he is of me, I feel like I don’t deserve the compliments.

Now is this someone you really want to hang around with?

There are tons of articles floating around the web referring to the 5 people you should spend the most time with. Ones who help you make you a better version of yourself than today.

What about people you should’t hang around with? Shouldn’t you make a list of the 5 types of people (or at least 5 people who you aren’t your best self around) you don’t want to be around?

Yeah, I get that it sounds negative, but we all need to say no more often. Especially no to people who won’t make us happy.

So go ahead make that list. Purge the people who drag you down. Move on and free yourself up for amazing things to come.

 

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I paid $200 to Sweat Alongside 100 Other People and This is What it Taught Me

Before we get started, I did not participate in a orgy. There I said it. And I know some of you thought it….

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It was a yoga class. And not just any yoga class, but one led by someone I’ve admired from afar for almost two years. He’s the director of the Ashtanga yoga institute in India. But enough about that.

The point it I actually paid what I consider a lot of money for this class (and if you must know, it included transportation to and from the venue, and a night stay in a not so bad hostel) and man, was I intimidated as heck. I mean, really, really, really intimidated.

 

I’ve never gone to a yoga class in years and was scared everyone around me was going to be better. I practiced almost every day for a month leading to the class. And you can get that every time I practiced I was thinking if I was going to embarrass myself in some form or another when I got there.

I made this class out to be more important and intimating than it was. I mean, who would care that I fumble during a headstand, or can’t get too deep into a forward bend? And why was I doing this to myself?

Because  my mind was playing tricks on me that’s what. It got me thinking about what other parts of my life I limit myself in. And as much as I’ve accomplished in my short existence on earth, I know there are ways I can push myself more. Get out of my head.

And I’m sure you have those moments too right? And I’m sure you at some point you thought I was crazy for preparing for one yoga class.

Ok, let’s get back to the sweaty bit.

On the day of the class, I was in fact really calm. I felt like I belonged there, with all these other yogis. The moment the class started, I knew just what to do, even the poses I never practiced. Whenever the teacher announced the next step, I’d somehow manage to execute them flawlessly.  It was hard, sweat was rolling down my eyes (it stings people!) but I kept going. Every once in a while, the teacher would come and correct what I did. But that was it.

Afterwards, I felt such a high I never experienced before.

Walking back to where I was staying for the night, I realized that I finished the class, and did more than I thought I could. I really did make the class into a bigger deal that what it should have been.

I went home and decided that my own limiting beliefs is what has kept me from furthering my business. Sure, I’ve had months where I’ve exceeded my income at my day job. But there were certain things (like getting different clientele and including different services) that I was too scared to do. I have no idea why. I seriously felt like I wasn’t capable of pushing myself to make more, do more, and be the kind of copywriter I really want to be. It’s silly isn’t it? I really did make it into a bigger deal than what it was.

A week after that, I worked my butt off to relaunch my  freelance writer site.  I’m proud of this baby. It represents a new direction I’m taking with my business and life. Is it scary? Yes? Will I alienate current clients/friends/mastermind group members as a result? Sure.

But I’m moving forward knowing that I have the potential to be more successful. It’s a matter of if I’m going to let my limiting beliefs get in the way.

What are you going to do today to put your best foot forward?

 

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Two Questions You Need to Ask to Finally Get Past Your Fear

I don’t know where I read my next guest poster’s story, but I friggin’ loved it. Read on how he got over himself and is living a life he lives. Anyhoo, enjoy the post!

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I sat there staring at the e-mail in my Sent folder. It was to my mom; an email list of four things that replaced my one full-time income.

In fact, It was a very detailed description of how those “things” had already fallen into place… or the path I would take so that they would.

The only problem:

I hadn’t actually quit my full-time job. The list in the e-mail was as yet only a wishlist of things I wanted to be doing and legitimately could be doing.

Also, I lied a bit.

There was a second problem:

That list and e-mail were two years old.

But, still, there I sat at the same full-time job, my stomach getting more nauseated at the thought of walking away from a concrete income.

I looked at my spreadsheet. You have one of these, right? It tracks your spending to see how much you spend in a month. It totals your savings and calculates how many months’ worth of savings you have to live on if you quit today. I promised myself I’d quit when my spreadsheet said 12 months. Today, it said 13 months.

I closed the spreadsheet the same way I’ve been doing every day for weeks… OK, clearly for years.

I breathed deep… and I typed out my resignation letter.

I quit that day.

 

Scaredy Cat

Heck yeah, I was scared! I walked away from a 15-year blemish-free career – a good income – and any chance of making it back to the Caribbean that winter.

For what?

Am I going to be able to pay the mortgage? Will I lose the house? Will I starve? Will I have to sell the car? Will I have to get a roommate? Will I be able to pay for my daughter’s prom dress… and sports… and the car I promised her? Crap! Am I going to have to give up my smart phone? How will I get anywhere without GPS?

Fear keeps you looking at what you might lose instead of what you will gain.

Now, I know better. I should have realized I was gaining freedom, gaining health, gaining a work history I was proud of.

For many of us, the reality is completely obscured. We have no idea what living a “good” life means… and some of us don’t even contemplate it.

Fact: Every dream I had was put on hold until the paycheck came, then there wasn’t time.

Fact: I was getting physically sick every day at work. This can’t be good.

Fact: I wasn’t doing anything on a day-to-day basis that was making me feel… good… or even worth anything.

That spreadsheet said I had 13 months of savings. I had more than a year before I even needed to check whether I’d be afraid of losing any of those things above. Two years later, I’m not even close to being afraid.

 

Fear vs Reality

The key to overcoming paralyzing fears is to break them down and mitigate the parts.  Once you’ve got it broken down into parts, ask yourself two questions:

  1.      What’s the worst possible outcome?
  2.      How do I make as certain as I can that it doesn’t happen?

Take a look back at the things I feared.  All of them were financial. But, if we look at those two questions, how bad is this really?

  1.      What’s the worst possible outcome?

My daughter and I become homeless.

  1.      How do I make as certain as I can that it doesn’t happen?

I had over a year to build some type of income. After 10 months, if there was nothing brewing, I could start looking for another job.

Is that really so bad? A 10-month vacation?

 

You can’t KNOW ahead of time

Truth be told, I was scared to death that the grass wasn’t actually going to be greener – that I was going to regret giving up the “awesome” computer job that was the envy of all my friends.

 

Applying the same two questions:

  1.      What’s the worst possible outcome?

I could never go back to a well-paying IT job.

  1.      How do I make as certain as I can that it doesn’t happen?

Keep my irons in the IT fire and keep my certs up to date.

Funny, two years after quitting, I actually feel like keeping my irons in the fire was a BIG waste of time. I never did actually keep my certs up to date, though, and I’m glad I didn’t waste the money.

 

Hindsight

Looking back, I do wish I’d quit sooner. I do wish I had focused on one thing instead of a couple different ones. I do wish I’d built a bigger piece of business before quitting. But, I don’t regret quitting.

…And that’s the key. If you can position yourself, with as much certainty as you can, that you’re not going to regret the choice, you’ve already made the choice. We regret the things we don’t do more than the things we do.

“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” -Anaïs Nin

Don’t let it get that far.

Stu11

 

 

 

Stu uses old-world philosophies to help people navigate what mystics call “everyday life in the real world.” He systematically quit his life going from corporate ladder climber to unbranded yoga instructor, choosing “sound cool” over “supposed to.” From building beauty into the web to building custom cufflinks, he tests what life throws him… finding fulfillment on the fringe.

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