Many people will not pursue their dream due to fear. One particular fear is the fear of what others will think. I must include myself in having that fear. I was almost paralyzed by fear of others opinions of my work. How did I overcome this fear? By surrounding myself with like-minded people who encouraged me to continue with my work. Every day I keep taking steps toward my goals. Some days my steps are larger than others and some days I feel as if I am crawling on my hands and knees.
When I was in the process of publishing my book I wanted to quit daily because of the barrage of negative and fearful thoughts that went through my mind. I’m glad I didn’t quit. Meeting that goal is one of greatest accomplishments in my life.
I’m a huge fan of Dr. Brene` Brown, author of “Daring Greatly” and her research on shame and vulnerability. She has some wonderful insight on how to view this fear of others opinions. Dr. Brown also talks about critics in some of her work and I find it important to share that insight as you embark on your journey. If you are interested in learning more about her you can check out her Ted talks here.
Dr. Brown shares a great reference from Theodore Roosevelt referring to his speech, “The man in the arena”. You can click here to see a full excerpt. In summary of the speech it is basically saying, do not care about the critics and haters, unless they are in the arena getting their ass kicked with you. I love that.
It’s easy to stand outside the arena and criticize. I would have to agree with Dr. Brown, unless you are in the arena with all of us, bloodied and beaten, then we should not give the critics our time.
Dr. Brown also shares in her work,“the greatest pain I’ve ever seen is from people who’ve spent their lives outside the arena, wondering what would’ve happened had I shown up?”
I understand that pain. I have known for years that I was destined for more than what I was allowing myself to accomplish. I was afraid of what feels like everything sometimes. It’s hard trying to figure out where to even start and then when you do start, it’s hard to stay on the path or know which way to turn. I understand, I have been there and still walk that path.
If you are just getting started on your dream, be aware, that you are going to have “nay sayers” telling you that you can’t. Some of them will be those closest to you. Do not give them time in your mind, unless they too are in the arena. Surround yourself with those in the arena, they will be honest and supportive. Seek out those companions for feedback.
My challenge to you this week is to seek out others who are pursuing their dreams and invite them into your life. Turn a deaf ear to those outside of the arena for they are letting fear run their life. As always, I am here to help you in anyway get started and begin your journey to your best self. Shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Wishing you all peace and success.