“After that, things can only get better.”
Stephen King is talking about writing here in his memoir, On Writing, but doesn’t this advice apply to pretty much everything in life?
What are you afraid to start? Maybe you want to go back to school. Maybe you want to switch careers. Maybe you want to write a book. Maybe you need to have a talk with someone. Maybe you want to try a yoga class.
I remember a few years ago when I knew it was time to ask my boss for a raise. I was literally paralzed with fear. I could not bring myself to walk down the hall to talk to my boss – my coworker had to force me. I felt like I was going to throw up as I knocked on his door. But as soon as I stepped into his office, I said the words that I needed to say. Just like that, it was over. I wasn’t afraid anymore – of his reaction, of being denied, or even being laughed at. I realized that what I was most afraid of was taking that first step, of knocking on the office door.
And then I got the raise. He offered me a bigger one than I had even thought to ask for.
Don’t let fear paralyze you. If you can find you first step, no matter how shaky it is, eventually, you will be walking. And then you will be laughing as you find your rhythm and start running.
The scariest moments in my life have always been right before I started something. Right before I made a change. Right before I spoke up. Right before I challenged my assumptions. Right before I decided it was time to act.
The longer we put something off, the more time we allow fear to fester, to grow and to take over. The more we delay, the less likely it is that we are going to be able to overcome our fear. The longer we accept the status quo, the easier it is to feel content. The longer we put off going after our dreams, the more out of reach they feel.
Don’t delay. No more excuses.
What are you afraid to start?