Today I wanted to share an excerpt from my soon to be published book Kick Fear to the Curb. I share this piece because of a comment that was made by a beautiful, talented, and highly gifted young lady who gave me several excuses why she could not pursue her dream. I share this because I want her to know that I have been there, done that, and have even written a book about it. My advice to her, and many times to myself, “don’t let those excuses stop you from chasing after, catching hold of, and taking action to live your dream.”
In the book, No More Crumbs, Rod Parsley states, “Fear pushes us into the darkness of hiding and offers us an escape from reality.” The reality is that challenges are a part of life, so too are rejection and acceptance, success and failure, lack and plenty, and death [and or] the unknown. It’s so much easier to wallow in self pity and find a thousand reasons to remain stagnant than it is to making an effort to move into attaining a life of purpose.
There are too many has-beens and wannabes paralyzed in their environments of limited vision. Parsley tells us that fear is like that. He says, “Lurking in the shadows are all the lies and half-truths that chain our lives to the past and shatter all our dreams of new tomorrows.” And I for one used to believe those lies and half-truths, until the day I came to the realization that I did not want to continue a life of non-existence. I suddenly woke up to the fact that I was not content to watch the world, or my life, pass by right before my eyes because I was afraid to take a chance.
One day, and it really wasn’t so long ago either, I made the decision to stop living in the so-called safety and security of working for a paycheck. Instead, I decided to live my passion. I believed that if the next phase of my life was going to be purposeful, then I had to stop doing the same thing over and again. I wanted to share with others the risks and benefits of pursuing my dream. I wanted to inspire, empower, and motivate.
At first I was very reluctant to take on this rather grand endeavor. After all, who was I? I certainly was no great orator. I didn’t possess intellectual rhetoric capable of captivating and enthralling an audience. In fact, whenever I spoke to a group of people, my mouth immediately became dry, my palms started to sweat, and my voice grew quietly small. That’s right: I became fearful. How on earth could I tell others its okay to take risks when I was constantly hesitating?
I began to think of all the reasons I must be wrong. I thought of all the people who had both the experience and knowledge to do a better job than me. I even went so far as to approach a couple of them with the idea. But after all was said and done, I knew deep down that I was capable of the task ahead. I had the knowledge, experience, and tenacity to take a project from start to finish. I had the drive and determination to successfully accomplish any task I set out to do. Still, I also knew that fear was equally good at rising its ugly head whenever a challenge was ahead.
Unrealistic fear, or as I call it, Enemy Number One, never fails to show up when you are about to make a move. Its aim is to make you doubt yourself and your abilities. I remember all too well how many times I was blindsided by fear but that will never happen again. That’s what you have to do today. Make a decision that the life you desire is going to be achieved. I won’t say that it will be easy but I will say that you can do it. From this day on, there will be no more excuses, no more procrastination, and no more unrealistic fear. So what are you waiting for, KICK FEAR NOW.
Rod Parsley, No More Crumbs. Lake Mary, FL: Creation House, 1997 ~ http://www.amazon.com/No-More-Crumbs-Invitation-Feast/dp/088419521X