“People are afraid of all kinds of things: spiders, the dark, or being enclosed in small spaces. Tell us about your greatest fear — rational or irrational.” –The Daily Post

Forget the fear of Failure! Let’s talk about the fear of success!  My greatest fear is that I will accomplish my dreams.  The reality of it all being possible is terrifying!  I realize also that I am not so alone in this fear.  So now what do we do?

If you pay attention to the graduation keynote addresses around the United States in May and June they all say the same thing.

Be Yourself!

Make Mistakes!

Follow Your Dreams!

Funny thing is by then you’ve probably completed your four years of undergraduate in a study that may not entirely be on the path of your dreams.  You may be thinking that the keynote address probably should have been what you heard after the fall semester of your second year – when the classes get real and liberal arts/general requirements are a distant memory.  Now that you’ve invested all this time and money (maybe just your parents’ money) in this degree, here comes this Politician, CEO, Director, Teacher of the Year, Alumnus Extraordinaire telling you to take the path less taken.  Easier said than done, right?

Prior to starting work full time my classmates and I constantly joked on what life would soon be like.  We all knew the “best years of our lives” was almost over, and it amazed me how many of us knew what we were getting into but went along with it anyway.  One friend said “Remember this face because you know once I start working you’ll never see me…”, another said, “You know once I start working I’ll probably never get two weeks back to back like this”, and yet another “I need to get all my sleep in now”.   It makes you wonder why?  We had already resigned ourselves to the fact that this is what life is now and that that is okay.  But is it really?  The fear here was not accepting the “norm”.  Anyone claiming to “never” let work get so crazy that they can’t take a vacation and balance family and work life, were met with “Good Lucks” and disbelief.  Yet those persons were the ones conscious of the untraveled road.  And at the end of the day the keynote speakers are right.

Take the road less traveled.  Find ways to live your passion every day.  Let misery find new company that is not yours.  Throughout 2013 I have learned a few key things that I think I have known all along.

–          You’re only as happy as you want to be.

–          When you do something you’re passionate about, others take notice, and it attracts others to do follow their passions as well.

–          You have power over your life and because we do not know when we will be called from this life, you need to enjoy it.

I have come to believe that when you are doing something that is right for you that connects with your heart and your spirit, you feel it in your gut.  But it is not just about feeling it.  It is also about acting on it.  Subconsciously we are all connected whereby intuitively our spirits can sense our personage.  Knowing that, it is time to give off to the world that presence of self and shine a light for others to see.  I am “powerful beyond measure”, as are you, and we do not need to be afraid of the light within ourselves.

So now what?  What do I do with the fear?  What should you do? I think it is about remembering what it is you love to do.  As a writer you do not need to immediately begin writing for a huge publication; as a performer, you do not need to book a huge tour with a top selling Grammy or Tony Award winner; as an artist you do not need your first piece to be accepted into the Guggenheim.  Each of those scenarios seeks validation from those outside yourself.  No one outside of you can make you believe who you are.  Incorporate your passion into your everyday life.  For me, that will be writing regularly and actually sharing it.  For a performer that may mean joining a group that meets weekly and performs locally.  For an artist that may mean volunteering once a week to share your art and teach a class.  We think work is in the way many times but it might just be you in your own way.  Remember to take time for yourself.  Start letting your light shine in order to let others in so they too can start acknowledging and reaching for their own potentiality.

So at the end of the day, the keynote speakers at all those graduations are right.  You can be yourself, you can make mistakes, and you can follow your dreams!  Let’s make it happen!



One thought on “You couldn’t be afraid of that!

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