Is there something that you have always wanted to do or thought about trying but something inside you told you that you couldn't do it? Think about that for a minute...
My guess is that's happened a time or two but something stopped you. Something told you that it was too hard, that you didn't have enough money, time, resources or guts to do it. I know I have, countless times. Fear has always been big part of it for me. I don't like to let myself down or fail. Of course, life is easier staying where things are comfortable. We might not push boundaries but we don't rock the boat either. Inside our comfort zone, we are 'safe'.
I've learned over the last few months that while, yes, life is easier if you stay where you're comfortable, it's a lot more fun when you step outside that box. This year I choose BRAVE as my word of the year in hopes that it would help me break down some of the barriers that, in the past, have hindered me from trying new things. It's funny that it took assigning myself a word to push me out of my safety net but it's actually more than that. I've read a ton of books lately that talk about vulnerability, putting yourself out there, turning limiting beliefs into liberating truths and being comfortable being uncomfortable. The biggest catalyst for change, personal development and self improvement happens when you get out of your comfort zone and I have personally felt that. Is it easy? No. It can be hard as hell. But, trust me, it is more fun. A lot more fun.
When I think back over the first two and a half months of 2019 in particular, I am so glad that I decided to get a little uncomfortable. I became a NASM Certified Personal Trainer, began discussions to develop my own at-home personal training business, and most recently, tried CrossFit. All of these things had been dreams and ideas floating around in my mind for years but I never jumped on them. Going back to last year, starting this blog was a big leap into my discomfort zone and it's steadily becoming more comfortable to share my stories and thoughts with the world.
A challenge area for me is meeting new people. It's hard to make friends as an adult and for the first few years I lived in town I didn't really know anyone outside of family members. Over the last year, I joined a moms group, school PTA, tried group fitness classes and since starting my blog joined a couple creative and blogging groups. I have made several great new friends and connections within my community which makes putting myself out there all the more worthwhile. Turns out that meeting people wasn't all that hard I just needed a little more confidence and trust in myself to show up, greet others, start up new conversations and let the rest unfold on its own.
There are still plenty of things that I have not quite gotten up the courage to do, but I am making progress, enjoying the freedom that living uncomfortable has provided me. To date, I haven't tried anything that I wish I hadn't. Furthermore, all the things I've tried, that in the past some limiting belief told me I couldn't, I've succeeded. Turns out all those limiting beliefs/stories/excuses/whatever you want to call it were wrong.
I stand here now encouraging you to go for it. Start small so you can get a taste of how amazing it feels when you cross something off your wish list you've been afraid to do. Then, keep going. Write your goals/dreams/wishes down. Tell a friend. Find others to help hold you accountable. Do whatever it takes to live out your dreams. Remove the words "I can't." from your vocabulary. Change your beliefs and thought process. You can, you just choose not to for whatever reason, story, excuse that someone, or more than likely, you have told yourself.
Let's try new things together. I'm on a mission to continue to push myself this year and I have no desire of stopping anytime soon. In fact, this morning I just tried spin class for the first time at my YMCA. I'd done spin before but it'd been years and to be honest the reasons I hadn't been in awhile were my own fears, doubts and insecurities. What if I can't keep up? What will others think of me? Will my crotch would be sore from the saddle? Today's mentality, so what. So what if I can't keep up. I'll go slower. So what about what other people think? Well, they don't and, if they do, other's peoples thoughts don't matter anyway. So what if my crotch hurts? It's temporary, and it did hurt a little by the way, but that's what cycling shorts are for! It also wasn't just my new mentality that got me to class, it was encouragement from my friends that helped get me on that bike.
If it scares you, why not try it? Remember, you don't need to try new things alone. Grab a friend and live out new adventures together. Change your story, change your fears and have more fun while you're at it. Believe that you can and you will.