UGH!! The "F" word ...
FEAR!! AHH!! I said it!! Phew, that is a hard word to say out loud, non the less admit to having it ALL THE TIME!! Okay, I want to take a minute to talk about fear. It is a nagging emotion that is always in the corners of my mind. Fear haunts every action and reaction that exists on a day to day basis in my world. Lets take a second to delve a little deeper into the world of fear and how I have learned to cope with it. Just maybe after reading this others will learn how to tell fear to jump back, and let bravery shine through.
Lets go back to the role I carry as being a mom. Fear is literally hiding around every corner, of every day of every action, heck even in the simplest acts such as trick-or-treating. What if the candy she gets is poisoned, what if one of her friends doesn't like her costume and hurts her feelings, what if she gets hurt walking down the side walk ... sheesh! Its a wonder I haven't had a nervous break down yet. Last night as I watched her get ready for Halloween I realized that as long as she gets a chance to express her artistic side, and I am always around to be a soft place to fall, fear has got to take a back seat to bravery and excitement for her as she grows into a beautiful young lady.
You see when I let fear drive my emotions I find that I am more reactive to everything and everyone around me. Anytime someone points out an area of my life where I may or may not be meeting expectations, I go on the defense. I respond with "well, you should have!" Instead of saying, "I shouldn't have agreed to be involved in the first place." When expectations of others are are not met, I find that fear based reactions start to play in a loop in my mind, "Im not good enough to be a trainer," "Why did i agree to do this," "I suck as a parent." Its so easy to get accusatory of others as well as myself, when fear is in the front seat driving the conversation in my mind. All the while love, kindness, and bravery are in the backseat being ignored.
As a business owner fear of failure is the number one biggest fear that I carry with me like a 50lbs sack, that I can never put down. Lets address a few fears real quick when it comes to owning a horse farm. Fear of the horses getting hurt, fear of the horses dying, fear of my riders getting hurt, fear of the business side going belly up. Now, you see how that fear bag can fill up quickly! When my schedule gets to busy teaching, I find that different aspects of my life start to slip. Parenting, social life, communication all start to fall apart. When I try to rein in the schedule so I can focus on other parts of my life, some people get offended because I can't fit it all into a 24 hour day. Then fear creeps back into the front seat to start driving and I feel the edges of control start to slip ...
So it is here that I fall back on one of my hero's, Brene Brown, words of wisdom. "Dare to be great!" You see, she has taught me through her readings that fear and bravery go hand in hand. Bravery would not exist if fear was not a common emotion to have. That was such a profound moment for me. Lets say it again, "Bravery would not exist if fear was not a common emotion to have!" So it is with that mantra that I have begun to approach this crazy adventure of my life. BE BRAVE!! Fear is always going to be present, just take a breath and BE BRAVE! Just take one hour at a time, one ride at a time, one student at a time. Just take a breath and be brave. So it is with bravery, love and kindness that I attempt to walk through this crazy adventure of my life. I will not make everyone happy on a day to day basis, and this is okay. Fear can stay in the backseat and I will carry love, kindness and bravery into the next part of my adventure.
I will leave you with one of my favorite quotes of all time, surprisingly brought to my attention by my daughter (who has an infatuation with Teddy Roosevelt), then re enforced by Brene Brown.
"It is not the critic who counts: Not the Man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by the dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of a high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly." - Theodore Roosevelt