Willingness to FEEL

If you were willing to feel nervous, would you go do that scary thing? If you were willing to feel upset, would you have that difficult conversation? If you were willing to feel shame, would you risk more? So often we avoid taking action because we are avoiding a potential feeling. The possibility of feeling an uncomfortable feeling. We let our brains talk us into staying small, staying safe, doing the known, and staying in our lane. Feelings aren't something to be fixed. They aren't good or bad. They just are. They are part of our human experience. They come with the package. One of my clients last week really wanted to do mind management on her feelings of nervousness that arose when she went into the competition arena. She wanted to feel less nervous. She said about 25% of the nervousness came from a natural, physical response to the environment. The adrenaline. And 75% of the nervousness came from stories in her head. Things she was worried about or telling herself might happen. She wanted to work on those stories; change them. With a goal of lessening the nervousness she felt. When I asked her if she was willing to just feel nervous, she started laughing. "Yeah, I suppose I could do that!" She's handled much harder things in her life, and this sport is one that she loves. As soon as she stopped thinking about stopping the feeling, it became lighter. When she decided she could accept feeling that way, and still go out and have a good time. No story modification necessary. Because, really, being nervous is uncomfortable, but it's not awful. It's not world ending. We just get scared of it. When we bring ourselves back to perspective and see that, while uncomfortable, it's totally livable, it loses its power. Feel the feelings…AND DO IT ANYWAY. Do it scared. Do it nervous. Do it ready for a wave of shame. Those who take action move forward. And gain all the rewards - learning, information, skill building, confidence. Those who take no action get no rewards. Other than staying right where they are and feeling safe. You can feel your feelings and survive. So welcome them! And go out there and take action! You got this.

photo from Devil's Bridge in Sedona, AZ

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