Overcoming fear of the unknown

It’s not uncommon for there to be a sense of nervousness or fear surrounding something you haven’t done before.

But then you do it again and it’s less scary, you’re able to connect to small points of familiarity that bring comfort.

And by the third time there is a sense of excitement, the thing you once feared has now become something to look forward to.

That is a simple summary for how I go about approaching things that I have anxiety attached to. It might take 3 months instead of just 3 tries but the important part is knowing that there will be a transition.

That thing that scares you doesn’t have to scare you forever.

 

Raising the stakes and sharpening up

It’s easy to get slack and fall off of all your useful practices. Often we don’t even notice until days or weeks have gone by and then you think to yourself, I can’t remember the last time I meditated.

Once you fall off it can be hard to get back on track. You might even start to get comfortable to the point where you stop keeping up with other habits too, like a domino effect.

Then you find yourself wishing you could sharpen up, wondering ‘How did I go from a consistent daily practice to feeling so detached from it that starting it up again doesn’t feel possible?’

What you need to do is raise the stakes, give yourself something to lose. Life has a way of working out that sometimes the stakes are raised without you and so you’re left with 2 choices (think Darwin), evolve or die.

Well more like keep up or fall behind.

Either way, the choice is yours.

An inconsistent tortoise

I often make comparisons between myself and others that do similar things to me or things similar to what I’d like to do.

Then the other day I read a quote by Mark Manson I think, it that was about competing with yourself and it really resonated.

It effected me differently because despite seeing (and rolling my eyes at) countless you only need to compete with yourself blah, blah blah quotes it never really clicked for me.

But the more I think about the things I’d like to do in life the more I realise how pointless it is to compete with others because I don’t want to be like them in terms of what I create. I think too much focus on competing creates space for distractions from the work, the goal, the plan.

I’ve progressed over the years, granted it’s been at an inconsistent stop and start tortoise pace but like that well known quote goes, slow progress is better than no progress.