Monday, September 5, 2011

Commandment #8: What would I do if I weren't scared?

I have mentioned this before (here and here. Many times in my life I have felt that something is holding me back. I don't even know if I could describe it. Perhaps it is a lack of confidence or a fear of failure. Plus, I have a tendency to be a bit of a worry wart. (Both those words disgust me. Worry. Wart. Gross.)

I've had that "someday" mentality. Like, I want to do such and such, but I'll do it "someday". I used to think that trying and FAILING was the worst thing that could happen. What if I did (fill in the blank) and wasn't any good? That would be embarrassing and then I would DIE. (Obviously.) If I didn't try than I couldn't fail. Over the past eight or so years, I have learned that the more than failure the worst thing is NEVER TRYING. If I don't at least TRY than I won't do anything.

Life is a trial and error kind of thing. You live. You take risks. You make mistakes. (See Commandment 7.) You learn. You make more mistakes. You grow. You become better.

After high school I moved away from home to Seattle and spent four years of college studying Educational Ministries (Theology), Youth Ministries and Psychology. Then I moved to California. By myself. I studied for another year to become a Director of Christian Education. Then I spent another year working at an internship that didn't result in a permanent job. All of these things were risky and NONE of them turned out how I thought they should. (Hello, I'm currently a temp! NOT working in a ministry position.) Each of those things were SO worthwhile and life changing. Had I NEVER done those things, I wouldn't be where I am or who I am and I wouldn't have learned life lessons along the way. I am better for each of those risks that I took.

Were they scary? I will answer with a resounding YES! Life is scary. Failure is scary. Mistakes are scary. Growth is scary. Change is scary. But all those things are also SO GOOD. They make life worth living.

When I was in California I got my first and only tattoo with Ashlee and Jenny. We got matching tattoos that say "Everything Adventurous." (Stay tuned for more about this in Commandment #11.) That became our motto while we lived in California, making mistakes and growing up together. I have learned that you cannot let fear control your life. Be adventurous. Life is precious and too short, so we must make the most of it. Don't be afraid to try things. Make mistakes. Make a mess. But by all means make something with your life and the time you have.

What are you scared of? Stop letting it hold you back. Go. Do. It. The scariest things in life are often the most worthwhile.

Side note: I highly recommend reading FEARLESS by Max Lucado.

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