24 Oct Can You Live With the Possible?
What does your relationship with discomfort look like?
Does it lead you to some unhealthy habits?
If those questions make you cringe a little bit, that’s normal.
I used to love playing it safe. Saving every penny. Settling in my relationships and jobs, being “fine” with accepting less.
I have post-traumatic stress from a childhood incident. My mom has mental health issues and after my father passed away unexpectedly in 2007, I was 23 and we had no safety net. Over the years, I became a Full-Time Risk Manager.
My friends mentioned something was changing about me. Where was my spark? I hated hearing that.
We all have had crises in our lives.
My only ask is that you don’t let what happened *keep you stuck*.
I’m not saying that is easy. It’s a practice. We are wired to keep ourselves safe. The crazy thing is that the fear trigger is so powerful, even one thought can activate our adrenaline, cortisol, and entire sympathetic nervous system.
What we *can* do, is start to recognize it. Maybe it feels like a rush, a pit in your stomach, maybe it takes your breath away a little bit. Notice what that trigger feels like. Welcome it if you can.
Next, acknowledge that you are NOT going to die. Yep, you read that correctly.
A book by Comedian Kyle Cease, *I Hope I Screw This up*, first alerted me to this concept. Kyle outlines how to explore the endless possibility that can appear if we just dare to let go of our fear (of screwing up).
Taking a leap of faith like leaving your job, speaking in front of a group, starting a business, sharing your feelings, acknowledging an injustice, taking a course, are not things that will likely kill us, but that fear trigger *will* still pop up.
The good news? You can let it pass right through you. While your body will get fully amped up, it can always return back to normal *within seconds*.
All you have to do is *breathe*. Slowly, deeply.
I like to put my hand on my chest so my body can feel that I’m there and it’s OK.
Once you do, you’ll immediately feel yourself and your heart return back to a normal relaxed state (assuming there is no real threat in your presence).
It’s an amazing tool.
*Extra credit: Begin a meditation practice. You’ll create a pause button between you and your fear response.
So I ask you, *how are you playing it safe?*
Because everything will never be OK. And everything is always OK.
I’m happy to say I am now creating the life of my dreams and yes, fear visits often. I rarely return to some of those old habits when it does. I have too much to celebrate and too much I love to do!
As Seth Godin says,“If you’re not willing to fail, you’re unable to be free.”
So start dreaming, and see where it takes you.