What Would You Do If You Weren't Afraid?
It is scary to take risks, but I think, living the life you do not want is scarier.
What if I start doing what I want, would it make my life better or worse? Can I really change my life and achieve my most desired goals?
These are questions I ask every single day. Most of the time, I feel very motivated. It feels like I can conquer anything in the world. I strongly believe that I have the power to change my life into something I want. But, sometimes, when I sit in front of the computer and do the job I do now, I start to doubt myself. Can I really achieve my dreams, or the statement "believe in yourself" has just become a beautiful lie of life? Maybe, I am not meant for something greater. WHY AM I STILL HERE? WHAT AM I DOING WRONG?
Many nights, I contemplate and ask the same question. "Why am I still here?" I have to accept the truthful answer; I am afraid. I know exactly what to do. I should leave my teaching job. Go writing full-time. I know the consequences and failures associated with it. It’s okay. I have plans anyway. BUT STILL, I AM AFRAID. I am not afraid for myself. I am afraid that if I fail, I can't support my family. I am a breadwinner. I can't be jobless. There are bills to pay. There are mouths to feed.
BUT THE QUESTIONS KEEP ME AWAKE AT NIGHT. THE THOUGHTS LINGER IN MY MIND. I SEE MYSELF HAPPY, FREE AND LIVING THE LIFE THAT I WANT.
Do you know where I see the best possible version of me? It's on the road which I am most afraid to take. WHAT IF I WASN'T AFRAID? What if I step out of my comfort zone?
Well, I have already made some small (but big) steps to achieving my goals. I've always imagined owning a blog several years ago. Now, I finally have one! I do not expect to earn much money from blogging, actually. However, I want this to be a way to reach out to people like you. I have always wanted to inspire and impact others in my own little ways. After all, small steps make big paths.
I am still afraid. I haven't fully stepped out of my comfort zone yet. But, finally, I am writing. I am writing from the heart in my own blog! It is such a great achievement. So, why am I telling you this?
I am saying this to let you know that, yes, you can change your life. We can change our lives. I am not at the peak of my success, and there is a lot to learn. But I am making progress. IT'S SLOW, BUT IT IS PROGRESS. I had so many doubts. I still do, but I know I will get there. Little by little. You will too.
Come to think of it, I have already made so many small steps that go beyond my old self. And as I go on, I see my beautiful future clearer and clearer. I am getting closer and closer.
You will too. These are ways that can help you get closer to achieving your goals.
1. Ask Yourself the Right Questions
When people realize how difficult the process is in achieving their goals, they start to feel discouraged. Their own ideas and self-limiting beliefs stop them. Why? Because these are what people usually tell themselves. I can’t do it. I don’t have these and that. It’s not possible because…
What happens when you make such statements? You believe them. BE CAREFUL WITH THE WORDS YOU TELL YOURSELF BECAUSE YOUR BRAIN WILL LIKELY ACT ACCORDING TO YOUR THOUGHTS AND WORDS. Instead of saying those close-ended and negative sentences, ask yourself questions.
When you ask the right questions, you allow yourself to give the right answers. Instead of thinking negatively and making excuses, ask yourself questions! Our brain is designed to instinctively answer questions or problems. That’s what it does. So, if you simply say “I can’t do it.” It’s done. That was a solution. Your brain does not think for more. But if you ask questions, your mind will find ways to solve them. And that’s what successful people do. They challenge themselves and keep asking.
An Interview with Myself
Mind: What do you really want?
Me: I want to be a blogger
Mind: So, what should you do to be a blogger?
Me: Well, I need a blog.
Mind: Then, make one.
Me: But it costs about $100.
Mind: Then how can you have $100?
Me: I have a teaching job. I think I can save $100.
Mind: So do it.
Always ask yourself the questions WHAT, WHY, AND HOW. By doing this, you train yourself to constantly think of a solution when issues or challenges arise.
Another important thing is to ask yourself, What should I do next? This statement lets you think of your next step. Then one leads to another, then another, and another until you arrive at the result you desire. Just don’t be afraid to take the first step.
Now that you know what questions to ask yourself, take action.
2. Be Intentional About Your Actions.
It is not enough that we know what we want. We need to do something too. Putting your plans into action would be a challenge, but if you remain SPECIFIC ABOUT YOUR GOAL AND YOU ARE FOCUSED ON IT, YOU WILL ACHIEVE IT.
Me: I did it. I saved $100 and paid for a blog!
Mind: Good job! When will you start writing?
Me: I’ll publish my first article this Thursday.
Mind: And then?
Me: And then, I will write something every day for 20 minutes. This way I can practice and accomplish something little by little for my blog.
Mind: Keep going!
Being clear about your goals, especially small ones, will lead you closer to your dreams. If you know what to do and when to do it, the result is clearer. For example, you want to work in a certain company. How can you be a part of this company? You apply for the position first, of course. So, submit your resume and prepare for an interview. If you don’t pass the interview. Go back to step one. Ask yourself, “What can I do to be able to work for this company?”
You will not always be successful the first time, but that doesn’t mean you will always fail in your next attempts! Maybe, for now, you need to do something.
Upskill. Relearn. Gain some experience. Then try again. I once heard, “Success is very uncomfortable.” But that is what makes success such a great thing. It pays higher when you work harder for it.
The first path you make may not lead you to your desired destination. So, make a second path.
Just because you worked and attempted, doesn’t mean you’ll be successful right away. Life will continue to test you. You have to be smart. The first plan failed, create a new one. Remember that you are the creator of your life, so only you have the power to keep making roads to opportunities for yourself. Keep trying.
You might need to keep improving yourself. You might need to keep failing for years to learn something. But if you keep going. They say that if you do not stop, there is no other way but to reach your destination… your goal.
For 4 years, I had attempted to find a writing job. I never found one. So, I had to keep practicing how to write. I read more books and learned more knowledge. Up to this day, I keep these habits. Now that I have writing samples and better skills, I realized why kept failing in the past. It was not only because I lacked the skill, but also, I didn’t really want to write for others. I wanted to own my blog and write as I want.
I am still currently employed as an online teacher, but I am quitting this job soon. I know what I want, and I have already made plans. They may fail. They may not. Who knows?
It is scary, but I think, living the life you do not want is scarier. If we don't choose the life that we want now, when? In the future, we will become older and weaker. If we wait for 5 more years to make a change, we lose 5 years of the life we could possibly enjoy.
WHAT WOULD YOU DO IF YOU WEREN'T AFRAID?
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Baguio City, Philippines