Going to the movies these days is expensive. I just saw The Greatest Showman and actually walked out of the theater feeling good about the money and time that I spent. There is nothing that I love more than watching people (even if they are actors) challenge what they believe about themselves, claim their power, and have the courage to grow into their fullness.
Although, The Greatest Showman is very much about those themes (and so much more), this post is not about the movie.
It’s about watching someone hold herself back and then shift into her power…in real time. Watch this video as Keala Settle sings one of the songs from the movie. I was literally clapping and dancing around my office while watching! This video was not a Hollywood production…this was real life.
It reminds me of a quote by Marianne Williamson, “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world.”
For various reasons, many of us play small. Regardless of your reason, the antidote to this is, plain and simple, COURAGE.
The root of the word courage is “cor” – which is the latin word for heart. The original definition of courage was “to speak one’s mind by telling all one’s heart.”
It takes courage to…
…share your talents
…pursue that great idea or a new job
…to accept that challenging project
…have a differing opinion than the group, your boss, in-laws, parents
…live in a way that you believe is right but is different than others
…not accept the volunteer opportunity or invitation
In all of these scenarios, there is a risk of failure and being rejected. But the reward is a healthier, more connected, more joyful life. Unfortunately, most of us go into fear mode and let our minds rule more than our hearts. Fear holds us back and keeps us playing small.
Here are two steps to get you out fear and cultivate courage:
- Take Action: Often we want fear to go away before we feel ready to take action. The thing is, that doesn’t happen. If you have been holding yourself back from anything that is in your heart to do. Start with tiny steps and then take progressively bigger steps. Courage is like a muscle and it gets stronger the more you do it.
- Be Vulnerable: It’s scary to put ourselves out there. The mere thought of being judged and rejected sends most of us back to our “safe and secure” existence. Don’t hide and keep yourself from the world. Not only is it tremendously painful to live your potential, the world also loses out on the special gifts that only you have to offer.
In full disclosure, I have been holding myself back out of fear. I spent most of 2017 studying Applied Positive Psychology with the intention to share it with my community in 2018. Although, it has profoundly impacted my happiness, I have yet to schedule even one workshop. I tell myself that I need to find the perfect venue, the timing isn’t right, I have to put more finishing touches on the presentations, I will not be able to convey the info like my teachers, etc. The bottom line is, I am afraid that the workshops (and I) will fail. OK...in case you missed it that was a tiny step and me being vulnerable. By sharing that with you, I am committed to offering a workshop. Stay tuned…
What about you? What are you holding yourself back from?