“Don’t let the fear of what could happen make nothing happen,” Gabby Bernstein. Looking through my old journals as I’m cleaning up the house and I am taken back years, transported to my late teens, early twenties, mid twenties, and my early thirties. I skipped the late twenties and I honestly don’t remember a lot of what I went through from 25 to 30. My skin crawls as I read the words repeated like a cycle, over and over, from year to year, wanting to change, starting to change, allowing myself to be derailed, sinking into some mental funk I can’t quite place, hating myself, and then trying to change again on the next venture that seemed like a good idea.
I noticed another pattern as well—I would allow myself to only get so close to a goal. Each time was a bit closer, but I never allowed myself to really see things through to the end result. I jumped from thing to thing whether it was a new job or a new hobby without putting in much thought, I just knew I needed something different. Naturally when no thought went into it, the results were nil. I feel so much disappointment in myself and realize how much time I wasted. I allow myself to feel overwhelm at the slightest inconvenience and I have repeated it for years.
I guess on some level I should feel grateful because I can at least recognize the pattern. As I’ve been addressing the things that I need to, seeing how I’ve held myself back has been cathartic and painful. It’s cathartic because I know I’ve done it to myself and I can change that moving forward. I can make a conscious effort to change and do things differently. It’s painful because I know I’ve done it to myself and it’s really hard to not feel regret over time I’ve wasted for no reason. I am working on strengthening my faith to trust that divine timing is real and that everything happens for a reason—which would mean that all of my self-imposed delays were for a reason as well—but I’m struggling to reconcile my inaction with purpose.
As timing WOULD have it, I came across this quote which I have to take as some sort of synchronicity. Bernstein cut right to the point of what I was doing: I was afraid of what would happen (or wouldn’t happen) and I stopped living. I started living the same day on repeat and I did it for over a decade, hiding behind the minor wins and helping others so I wouldn’t have to focus on my own issues or make a decision about what I wanted to do. I didn’t know how to take responsibility for what I wanted and I let the fear of a non-existent failure lead me directly to failure because I never even tried.
The last year has brought about changes and I’m no longer able to hide behind what I’ve always done. Honestly, I no longer want to. I no longer want to pretend that what I’ve been doing is living. I want to let go of my death grip on life and let it flow. I want to see what is in store for me and I want to learn to enjoy my life before I have no life left. Time is so fleeting and I learned that when I had my son, and then he is suddenly four years old, and then the world shut down, and suddenly another year has passed and when I wake up and it’s another Monday and then it’s Friday and I’m still wishing to do what I want to do. And then I find an old journal and I see I’ve been asking for the same thing for so long as I speak to you about taking action.
Please don’t misunderstand, I am proud of the action I have taken because I’ve had immense growth in the last year. But I see how much more I need to do. Even as I type those words I know I’ve spoken them before as well. But they hold a different meaning this time because time holds a different meaning. Life is meant to be enjoyed, not endured. Experienced, not feared. And it can be whatever we want it to be. In spite of my inaction to the contrary, I truly believe that. Even if it’s sparking the light in others, that is an action to make the world a better place. For me I want to see this world differently. Release the weight and enjoy again and see the steps as they come. And I’m ready to release the fear and take those steps.