“Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will.”
-Suzy Kassem, Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem
Holy crap. (Can I say that?) I mean it in the most positive, respectful way. Thank you to the 3,000 people who read my Why I Left TV News blog post, called, texted, and reached out to me on social media. I never thought I’d get this type of response (because seriously, it’s me. Who cares what I have to say?)
I’ve reconnected with people I haven’t spoken to in years, made some new connections, and heard incredible testimonies from people. Mind blowing. I’m so glad my post spoke to so many people and just maybe inspired them in some way.
Alright, so what am I doing now that I’ve left TV news? A couple things. First, I’m venturing into the world of internal communications with a company in central Florida. I won’t say the name (separation of blog and business, feel me?) but already the culture is incredibly different. I chose this opportunity because the company has a great reputation, retention rate, and upward mobility. Also, I get to help celebrate people who are helping others, so it’s a great opportunity to give back while using my communication skills.
Also, I’m living with a lot of fear. Did I make the right decision? What if I don’t like it? What if I get bored? What if I can’t hack it? What will my future look like in 30 years?
Does anyone else expect all the fear to vanish after they take a leap of faith? (Just me? Okay.) I mean, I had the courage to make the jump so I shouldn’t be afraid anymore, right? Wrong. Where did I get this idiotic idea anyway?
Having courage doesn’t mean our fear disappears. They live within us simultaneously and we constantly have to choose how we will act. It’s easy choose fear because you stay in your comfort zone. And even though I acted with courage to start this new professional journey, nestled in the center of it, all my excitement, and liberation is a pesky seed of fear. But what I’m learning is, you must move through the fear. Feel it. Own it. Then forge ahead anyway.
It’s a new approach I’m taking to life because I don’t want to miss out just because I was afraid. I’ve done that too many times already and have regrets. I was too afraid to stay in the hospital room when doctors took my dad off the ventilator 11 years ago and he died. Thankfully, my courageous sisters were in the room with him when he took his last breath.
But I’m growing and changing. That’s why I, the girl who runs out of the ocean if a school of fish swims around her, held a dead fish at Sea World last week and fed a sting ray. (I know, I lose a few points because the fish was dead.)
But I was standing there thinking; I have this cool opportunity in front of me and I’m not going to do it because I’m afraid? When my husband tells people how he fed a sting ray, I’ll follow up with, “But I was too afraid, so I didn’t do it.” Lame! So, I grabbed that dead fish (gingerly, of course), flinched a few times when the sting ray swam towards me, then stood in my fear and let the animal slurp it up.
Video: Feeding a sting ray
That’s a small example. A bigger one would be starting this blog. I agonized for months over whether I wanted to start it and who would even care to read it. I delayed launching the website because of it. Then I remembered a good friend told me to “be fearless” so I published it and am now in awe that so many people read my first post.
That brings me to my last point. Fear made me give up on one dream before I even tried to accomplish it. For the longest time I never told anyone about it, convinced, I wasn’t good enough to do it and people would judge me harshly for it. But then I started driving by this sign on the way to work every day and it had a quote by Suzy Kassem on it:
I doubt myself so much it deserves its own blog post. But as I said, I’m owning my fear and being fearless. So, I’m going to take my dream and make it a reality. I’m going to write and publish a fiction romance book.
Excuse me now while I go hide under a blanket and do a social media blackout for the next week.
Photo above by Valdemaras D. on Pexels.com
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