I wanted to chat about facing fears, ahead of an exciting but scary weekend for me as I go on a solo adventure to London. In case you haven’t been able to see the clue in the title, this has been a fear of mine! But, after I went and did it back in November, to the same place, the same event, and the same amazing, lovely girls at Career Girl Daily, the fear of travelling alone and going to an event had been bossed, and it was 100% worth it! Chloe 1 – fear 0.
We’ve all been there though haven’t we? (The fear thing, not the event I went to). Every once in a while you come across an opportunity – an event, an adventure, or a career prospect, and a voice inside you instantly shrieks with excitement just at the picture, or the title, and you think “oh my god I would LOVE to do that/go there/work there”. But after just a few moments of feeling like you’ve found your calling, you dismiss the chance, shutting it down completely. Why? A massive list of fears and anxieties, that’s why. Suddenly the rush of excitement is replaced with “I can’t do that”, “I don’t have time”, “I can’t afford that”, “I won’t manage”, “what would people say?”, “what if it doesn’t work out?”, “me?! Do that?! No. I can’t.” And I’m sure for a lot of us that’s the end of it.
But when you actually think about it, and you really pick apart at these fears, there’s never really much of a reason to them. I just feel a drop in my heart and think “I can’t .. because I can’t”. And any reason we can eventually think of is often fuelled by our own insecurities of who we think we are, when everyone else sees something different. Well let me fill you in on a secret – you’re actually the one who decides who you are and what you do. If there’s something you really want to do, where the thought of it gets you excited, and it scares you a little bit for all those anxiety-riddled reasons, you can actually kick those fears in the teeth and do it. Here’s how I did it:
What Can You Do Right Now?
So you’ve found an opportunity and you’re thinking “YES! I WOULD LOVE THAT!!”. Before you even think of letting any fears set in, do something, right then and there that will get you to think “actually, I really could do this”. Start looking into what’s involved, visualize yourself actually doing it, or if you’re feeling fierce, go right ahead and book the damn tickets! Make yourself see that it really is possible before your brain tells you it’s not, and keep that spark of excitement burning for phase 2 (which is basically stage 1..)
What Do You Need?
Act fast while you’re still at the excited “I want to do this!” phase and looking into what’s involved. Think about what you would actually need to do it before the fear sets in. For me it was money and time off work for travelling to London for the weekend. As soon as I heard about the event and when it was, I added up roughly how much it would be for flights, cheap hotel and the event itself and boom! – I proved myself wrong with the fear of not having enough money. It turns out a weekend away doesn’t cost the earth as my mind tricks myself into believing – Ok I might have to eat baked beans for the last week of the month if I overspend on other things, but that’s the worst that will happen. If baked beans is the worst thing that will happen on the money side of things, then wtf am I worrying about?!
What Will You Lose?
If you’re of an anxious disposition this is going to send your panic levels waaaay up, but think about what’s the worst that could happen (are you freaking out yet?). Ok, not things like “what if I get kidnapped”, but all those little irrational fears like – “what if people think it’s stupid?”, “what if it’s doesn’t work out and it’s a waste of money/time”, “what if I forget about what to do at an airport or miss my flight”, “aaaah I’ll be totally alone!”. So now you’re freaking out a little but relax, and think about what would happen if all this stuff actually became a reality, or how likely it is – You can actually choose whether you want to care about what people think or not. Trust me, try it. If it doesn’t work out as planned, at least you’re not left wondering what it could have been, and I bet there will be at least one good thing that comes from it if you think hard enough. Millions of people get on planes every day – if they can do it so can you. And unless you’re going to a desert, or the moon, are you really going to be completely alone? I was going to the most populated city in the whole damn country and I was scared of being on my own. It makes no sense! Slowly but surely you’ll start thinking “yknow what.. I actually can do this! Can’t I?” Yes you can, you’ve realised the secret – your fears aren’t real, they’re faking it and so can you, you may not think you’re the type of person who, say, goes down to London for a career girl event run by a hugely successful blog that you love – but you can be if you want to.
What Will You Gain?
We often worry about “what if”, but it’s always about the bad stuff and never about the amazing things that could happen. “What if I fall? – Oh but my darling what if you fly?” – one of my favourite quotes that helps to chill me out at times like this. Maybe this opportunity that you’ve stumbled upon will be amazing! Maybe you’ll do it and love it just like you thought you would as soon as you came across it. It could happen.
For me, the fact that I was getting up off my ass, going somewhere, meeting people, doing something new and exciting gave me enough reason to go and do it and forget about what people would think and what could go wrong, because there was more for me to gain than lose. So I went to London on my own, and I marched on in to the Hoxton Hotel in my leopard print boots with my head held high and a smile on my face. I learned more about business, blogging and career in one day than I had through four years at uni, and I felt more driven and excited than I had in a long time. I loved it so much that I’m going to do it again this weekend (!!!) and being a little bit more of who I’d like to be.
So if an opportunity comes up that gives you all the feels and all the fear – show your worries who’s boss and go for it!
I’d really love to know what you think and if there’s any fears you’re thinking about facing so leave your comments below, and follow my adventure over on instagram!