Sunday Inspiration – Facing Fear

Aug 09

Sunday Inspiration – Facing Fear

We are moving, so I’m sharing some posts from the archives. This post was originally shared on January 5, 2014.

I’ve had the idea to share our goals and start a blog about the process for some time. What held me back was fear. It sounds silly when I put it into words, but the voice in my head (you have them too, so don’t judge!) was saying, “What if someone says your plan is stupid? What if they say it won’t work?”

This was a real experience for me as a child. Growing up, I expressed a desire to be several things – a writer, a songwriter, a dancer, an actress. I wanted to move to New York and be on Broadway and in movies. I wanted to write stories and poetry. Many of you who knew me in high school are saying, “Really? Quiet Christina from the back of the class wanted to be an actress?” Yes, I did. But by the time I was in high school I stopped sharing these ideas with others.

These dreams were not encouraged by family or teachers. I was told, “This story isn’t very good. Why would someone read this? Why would a singer want to sing this song?” I had teachers who rewrote a poem submitted for a class project, and others who had me rewrite over six times for a contest because “it must be in stanzas, it must be A,B,A,B format, all the first words must be capitalized,” and so on. It’s no wonder I follow Heinlein’s rules for writing at this point. I wish I’d known them then and shared them with my seventh-grade English teacher. She probably would have withdrawn me from the contest and flunked me at that point.

Once when I’d typed out a draft of a story and shared it with my family, I was told “The words aren’t lined up on the sides. Books are all lined up.” Even when explaining it was a draft and lines are justified when the book is published didn’t get me anywhere. I was told reading fiction was a waste of time. I should read my schoolbooks or something else that would be more useful.

But reading fiction made me happy. Writing fiction made me happy. Writing songs, crocheting half-a-blanket before running out of yarn and eventually knitting a sweater that ended up too small – all of it made me happy. So for a while I continued these things because they made me happy, but over time I stopped because the voices of my family, teachers and co-workers became louder than my own.

This fear crept up on me as we got closer to releasing and promoting this blog, our dreams and ourselves out to the world at large. I asked my husband about this as we drove home after visiting family on Christmas Day. “Are you afraid when you tell someone what we want to do? Are you afraid they’ll say it’ stupid and will never work?” “No,” he said. He asked me why and I shared with him some of the things that happened in my childhood, then added, “When we visited with Bob today and you asked me to share our plans, I was scared. It surprised me when he saw the value in what we wanted to do and was supportive.” “Most people will be supportive,” Scott said “Maybe that fear was real to you back then, when you were a child, but is it real today?” This is why he’s such an awesome coach 🙂 He helps me see when beliefs are no longer serving me. I knew he was right. This fear is from over 25 years ago. Why was I letting it hold me back, letting it cause doubt?

What fears are holding you back? Are they better left in the past? Face them, let them go and share a dream with someone. I’ll bet they’ll be more supportive than you think.

The Sunday Inspiration post may be about anything / everything we find inspirational. This includes messages about our Christian faith. Whether or not you share our beliefs, I hope you will find Sunday Inspiration posts encouraging and uplifting. 

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