I’ve recently started blogging. I like how blogging is now a legitimate, widely used word, but Word spell check does not recognise it. Yo, Microsoft, catch up! Anyway, blogging. What is blogging? Writing? Sharing? Connecting? Carving a small space in the online world where like-minded people can come together over a cup of tea? Yes, to all of that and so much more. But what blogging requires is a big batch of cojones, a desire to share your words which overrules the fear that no one will listen and a commitment to keep going no matter what. An urge to connect, to use the wonder of the online community to share insights with others, whether big or small.
I won’t lie to you. My e-baby is still an infant and I have already thought of giving it all up. Stop writing, stop talking, stop teaching; stop putting myself out there. Would it matter anyway? Does the world need another teacher, another blogger, another article on yoga?
Doubt, fear, self-sabotage. Playing it safe. Stay within your box and don’t come out.
Ever. Keep playing the same tune, over and over again.
When we have a desire to do something new, to develop ourselves mentally, physically, professionally, no matter what it is; there comes a point when we need to enter unknown territory. And then, Hello, uncertainty! Hello, uncomfortable feelings! This space is strange, weird, foreign and we feel threatened by the vagueness of the new. It brings up awful feelings of doubt, of wondering what the hell we were thinking in the first place. A need to escape and to hide back under the familiar, good old security blanket.
We resist. We come up with excuses and all our stories about why it’s not right, it’s not possible. We stop ourselves in our tracks. We blame others, our circumstances, our education, the economy, the dog. Anything to shake off this feeling that something is about to happen.
Well, what if this something, was something good?
In fact, not just good, but amazing? What if what we think is an unreachable, deadly volcano is simply a mountain and climbing to the top would bring us the most breathtaking view? What if instead of coming down, we need to keep going? But our fear stops us. It quietly instructs us to stay here, in the routine, under the shelter of having done this before. And we listen. And we listen because we are also afraid of what will happen if we get what we want. Ouch.
I’ve recently been thinking about ego (see my previous post on the power of this little bugger here) and letting ourselves shine. How we’ve learnt that it is acceptable to talk about our difficulties and our shortcomings, but how hard it is to share success and bliss. I’ve witnessed myself diminishing my joy (in fact, head over to read some more inspiration on this on an awesome post by Rachel MacDonald at In Spaces Between), sabotaging my ambitions and minimising my achievements over and over again.
But what happens when you don’t slam on the brakes? What happens when you let yourself shine; really, fully, SHINE BRIGHT? What if you let yourself consider staying with that feeling? Not tune it down to fit with other people’s moods, nor brush it off as something silly and insignificant. What does it feel like to shine? When you are truly there, respecting your passions, your intuition, doing the work despite the fear, people will support you. You are an inspiration and a guide to help others find a way to shine their own light.
And even if things don’t work out, you will have gone through an experience, a lesson that you can add to your toolbox for the next challenge. Criticism? If it’s useful, take it in. If it’s negative, let it bounce off you. What did it teach you? I can bet wholeheartedly that going for it and losing is a gazillion times more worth it than not trying in the first place. And did your world collapse? Probably not.
HOW DO YOU SHINE?
+ Share your success story, your happiness, your news, the joke you read. Tell others what is making you smile.
+ Share your thoughts, your journey, you ideas, your hopes.
+ Put yourself forward, make a step; a tiny little step or massive leap. It does not matter. Go for it, and see what happens. Others will follow, you’ll see.
//You don’t know the future, so just try.
+ And if you are shy, do it your own way. Don’t be intimidated by the loud, out-there rulers of your world. Think creatively and bring yourself closer to what you want. Take it from an introvert – you can be authentic and still kick ass (quietly)!
+ Every day, give yourself permission to pause & pat yourself on your shoulder. Give yourself a good old hug. A pep talk, instead of a telling off. Smile, own it, be proud.
+ Celebrate every little victory, every little joy. Be there fully for as long as it lasts. Cook a nice meal, go out, cling your glasses, dance, call your people, beam! Even if it’s for a split second.
+ And then ask others to do the same. In your relationships, what do you talk about? While you’re brunching with your friends make it safe to glow; make it safe to say “I am so freaking happy!” and don’t let them apologise for it. Hold each other’s hands while you climb up.
Words of wisdom to keep you shining:
// Nothing can dim the light that shines from within.
– Maya Angelou
// Happiness increases when shared with others.
// As we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
– Nelson Mandela
// People who shine from within, don’t need the spotlight.
+ Wow, that was some intense sharing from me. Hope it gives you a gentle nudge or a kick up the bum to get a move on and share your sparkle with the world! And any words of advice on how to keep beaming when we want to hide? What makes you shine bright? Let’s share some success stories and keep that smile going! Lots of love x
Image credit: Guillaume, Unsplash