It’s 4:07 a.m. and I’ve been awake for almost an hour. It started as a jolt out of sleep. I had heard something. When my mind cleared enough to realize I was in my bedroom, I noticed the hallway light from under the door. Who was up? One of the kids? I didn’t remember the light being on when I went to bed.
As I got up to investigate, winky-blinky sleepy-eyed cats met me at the door. Apparently they hadn’t heard it. They were wondering why I was up. The kids bedroom doors were closed and a peek in revealed sugarplum dreams.
Too late now for sleep. I am totally awake. There’s a task I’ve been putting off. This task; my very first blog–my forage into new waters, a new direction for my business and my life. And as always, the financial pressures of raising three kids on my own are on my mind. Will this new direction pay the rent, put food on the table? Not only that–babies need shoes!
This feeling is familiar–unfortunately. Fear. Someone once told me: Fear stands for False Evidence Appearing Real. It seemed such a logical explanation for such an intense emotion. And even though the evidence “isn’t real,” it sure feels that way. It feels as real as that light in the hallway. I know the spiritual path behind fear. It is here to motivate me, to enlighten me, to push me ahead on my path, but why is it that it brings such angst?
Sitting here, immersed in the light, doing what I do best–writing, I feel some of the tension slipping away. Just writing about it dissipates the emotion and by redirecting my activity I move through it.
Motivational speaker Sandra Smith, of Aspire Productions, said to me a couple years ago when I was in this exact same transition, “change your behavior.” I wanted desperately to be out of the business transition I was in and into stable financial situation. I was tired of falling short every month. Credit card debt was the price I was paying and it was all consuming. Fear took hold of me and I couldn’t get past. I wanted the emotion to stop. Sandra told me I was focused on the wrong thing. She told me to stop trying to “turn off” fear, but instead, keep the emotion and “turn on” activity. Just doing something productive to move my life and business forward would change the intensity of the emotion.
It worked then, and I know it can work now. Except one thing is different today. I’ve come to understand that fear is a common emotion, and thanks to Karla McLaren in her book Emotional Genius, I can now honor that emotion and use its energy to propel me forward–if I focus on changing my behaviors.
I’ve also since discovered that a better acronym for fear is: Forgetting Everything’s All Right. Time to switch my focus to what is right–for me. And now that I’ve gotten this first post, the baby step behind me, perhaps I can just turn off the fear, like the hallway light, and sleep peacefully knowing that everything IS all right. And I’ve done one thing that feels right.