I used to enjoy watching Grey’s Anatomy. The first couple of seasons were bearable for me (in storyline and content). My favorite part was the narrative made by the main character, Meredith Grey. I recently watched an early episode from season one and the opening narrative involved the following:
I don't know why we put things off. But if I had to guess, I'd say it has a lot to do with fear. Fear of failure, fear of pain, fear of rejection… Sometimes the fear is just of making a decision. Because, what if you're wrong? What if you're making a mistake you can't undo?
Whatever it is we're afraid of, one thing holds true: That, by the time the pain of not doing a thing gets worse than the fear of doing it, it can feel like we're carrying around a giant tumor.
Amen, sister. This tied in perfectly with the chapter I read in The Happiness Project yesterday...
It all started with the inability to sleep on Saturday night. I lay in bed until 5 am or so. That was the last time I checked the clock. And by that, I mean it was the last time I accidentally glanced at the mirror on our wall as it reflected the neon clock on our oven. I hate knowing what time it is when I can’t sleep.
I woke up yesterday morning (aka: three hours later) for church. When I sat up in bed, my head spun like a merry go round. I wasn’t nauseous, but I was dizzy and exhausted. Gabe was getting ready for church when he came in, sat on our bed, and said something about something... All I remember is responding with a mumbled, “I dreamt that they turned me into a fish.” I think I expanded on this a little more, but I doubt it was very logical. I fell back onto my pillow and basically blacked out until noon. It was weird, but not unheard of; Sleeping has never been my forte; niether has waking up. Therefore, I missed my church meetings and the entire day was accompanied by a dark cloud of insomnia and headache pains.
Last night, I took some medicine to help me fall asleep. It wasn’t kicking in. So I took a shower and read out of The Happiness Project for a little bit. The author talked about failure. I have made a decision to follow her example and try to live like failure is fun. Weird, I know. But we so naturally believe that failure is all negative and horrible, so bear with me. If I send in a written article to be posted in a magazine or news paper and it is rejected, then so what? At least I tried. When we succeed, we accomplish. But when we fail, we learn and grow. Giving up and failing are two different things, this we must be clear about. Giving up can be a result of pride, laziness, and most often, fear. Failing is simply a result of attempting. And attempting anything these days is admirable.
Ever since I immersed myself into the blogging world, I have discovered just how much fabulous stuff is given away for free by fellow bloggers and other websites. We are talking about five giveaways per week, on average. And I have entered dozens of these contests, if not more. How much have I won? Well, my name has been drawn about three times. And I received some darling gifts that I never would have received if I had just ignored the giveaways because, well, what are the chances I will win anyway? The more you try, the more you will fail and the more you will succeed. This year, my failure will be fun. My faith will grow, and my character will be built.
Those were my last thoughts before drifting away into sleep. And after waking up, I still think they are pretty awesome. I am trying to make a list of goals without the fear of failure being an issue. This will most likely include some aspect of returning to college for my Bachelor’s degree... finally.
If you had no fear of failure, what would you attempt to do with your life?