This past summer I claimed the saying, “Do it scared!” because I realized I have allowed myself to NOT do many things, because I was scared. Scared of what people would say or think, scared of whether I would succeed or fail.
It is infinitely easier to live in the dream of “someday” than it is to step out and do the thing you fear.
I turned 35 this past summer. I’ve realized something over the last few years…that I’ve lived most of my life in fear, or should I say I’ve existed in fear, because not doing things you want to do because you’re afraid isn’t living. The biggest thing I did was I finally got a tattoo.
For the past 20 years I’ve talked about it, but I finally did it. Believe me, all that day, waiting for my appointment, I kept telling myself this was the stupidest thing to do and more than once I picked up my phone to cancel the appointment, but I didn’t. I did it scared.
I did it knowing that I may regret it or that people may look down on me for it, but I did it. I didn’t let all my fears of “if” and “maybe” keep me from doing something.
You see, the thing about our fears are that they’re usually unfounded. Of course, there are those fears that are healthy fears, that keep us safe, but by and large they’re non-existent.
Fears are things we’ve put in place to keep ourselves in our comfort zone. It’s an excuse we use to give ourselves permission to not even try.
This fall, I brandished my perfectionism as an excuse to not do something. I realized it was actually my fear of failing, of not meeting expectations (mine and other’s). It’s ridiculous! I had a vision in my head of what I wanted my Halloween costume to look like, but I was scared of messing it up.
I’ve never considered myself much of a perfectionist. Yes, I like things to be just-so, but for the most part I can let things slide, but I’ve realized something, my perfectionism manifests itself in fear. I let me fear of things not being just-so, keep me from even trying. After 6 weeks of procrastinating I did it scared. I made the first cut, stitched the first seam, and it came out awesome!
Fear is not from God. We are not meant to live in a constant state of fear. We are meant to live in the knowledge that we are marked as Christ’s own, that we are to live our lives to His glory, and if we are living in fear, we’re not doing that.
When I was younger I would always tell myself, “I can do all things through Jesus Christ who gives me strength”, and it always helped me to move forward in spite of fear. Did I always use it the way the verse was meant to be used, no probably not, but it certainly helped me to act even when I was afraid.
Do not let fear keep you from living your life to it’s fullest. You will mess up. You will be disappointed at how things turn out. But those mess ups and disappointments will be nothing compared to the regret you will feel when you have lived your life and, at the end, think of all the “I should haves…” that you never did.
Live the life God has given you. Trust in Him and who He created you to be, the life He planned for you to live. Don’t let fear keep you from being who you are. Don’t let what other people might think or say keep you from living your one and only life. Be BRAVE (my word for 2018).
***And FYI getting my tattoo was awesome, and yes I will be getting another 😉