Ok, so my friend John has told me that I need to publicly declare my fears, so that I can be held accountable. Another friend then wondered if ‘accountability’ meant getting an accountant in to check my progress, which made my tummy flip. Accountants are one of my fears.
Here are the others, in no particular order:
karaoke, public speaking, stand-up comedy, smiling at men, asking men out, any kind of confrontation, approaching new publications to write for, starting my new business (I’m going to hold workshops advising small businesses on how to get publicity without paying for expensive PR companies – if you’re a small business owner please come!), opening my bank statements, doing my tax return, facing up to my finances in general, getting the FOUR fillings the dentist says I need, getting a mole checked-out on my back, asking for help, asking for people for favours, asking people if they want to meet up (even with good friends, I think the answer is going to be no), saying anything negative/critical to anyone, finding out what people really think of me (being disliked), being criticised, driving on motorways, parallel parking, trying anything new, skydiving (or any kind of daredevil stuff) making plans for the future (I’m a commitment-phobe)
I think that’s 23 different things.
Some are daily fears, others are just random things that I’d be terrified of doing.
Fear of stand-up comedy doesn’t affect my life but I can think of nothing worse than pouring out your comedic heart and having nobody laugh, or worse still, boo. The rejection, failure, embarrassent… it makes me feel so anxious that I can’t even watch it.
But that scenario is really just a magnified version of all my daily fears – fear of failure, fear of rejection, fear of looking stupid, fear of people judging and criticising me. The reason I don’t broaden my work horizons is fear of rejection, failure, criticism, not being good enough. The thought of asking a man out is so scary for similar reasons – fear of rejection, not being good enough etc.
But to all these fears Susan Jeffers has one response: ‘YOU’LL HANDLE IT.’
So with that in mind I hereby publicly declare that by the end of the month I will have ticked off every item on that list. Including stand-up and asking men out. I’ll become a laugh-a-minute slut.
In the meantime I’ve started with this:
Yes, today I did my first parallel park since my driving test when I was 17. And no, I’m really not exaggerating. I don’t drive often and, when I do, I prefer to park three miles away than suffer the stress of trying to parallel park while angry cars pile up behind me. Today however, I felt the fear and did it. Sort of. I drove up and down our local high street three times before I found the courage to take a stab at it. It was a bit tight and I got flustered when a white van came up behind me. I went in too steep and hit the pavement. I tried to fix it but I just seem to get more wedged in.
It was only when I got out to take the picture that I realised that my ‘tight’ spot was actually the size of Africa.
It was a bit embarrassing but who cares? I did it.[easyazon_link asin=”0091907071″ locale=”UK” new_window=”default” nofollow=”default” tag=”hemebl08-21″]Feel The Fear And Do It Anyway: How to Turn Your Fear and Indecision into Confidence and Action[/easyazon_link]
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