The most terrifying thing I did this year. (And pictures to prove It!)
Why are we so good at doubting ourselves?
Even if we don’t say it out loud, we usually have an “I could never…” on mental repeat.
What is it for you?
What scares you?
What makes you want to throw up a little?
The thing that is on repeat in your head with the “I could never do…” attached to it.
What is it?
I could never… start a business?
...Write a book?
...Run a marathon?
...Live on a budget?
...Work out regularly?
...Have a great marriage?
We all have our own "I could never do...." Mine actually made me feel ill.
Isn’t it funny (not funny) that some of the most capable humans on the planet are the ones that doubt themselves the most? Why is that?
Seriously, moms are basically the air traffic controller, a chef, a counselor, an event planner, a housekeeper, a corrections officer, a personal assistant, a nutritionist, a personal shopper, an organizer, a scheduler, and an emotional supporter ALL AT THE SAME TIME for 12 hours (or more!) a day for however many people you have in your family. E-V-E-R-Y single day.
Most moms don’t think they’re amazing.
Quite the opposite, most moms carry around a bag of insecurities like it’s part of the job.
What’s in your bag?
Maybe it’s the stretch marks you don’t like.
Or the sagging that you see.
Maybe the wrinkles… or the greys that catch your eye in the mirror.
Maybe the brain fog from no sleep and #momlife
But what if our “I could nevers” are exactly what we need in order grow?
I’m all about my kids growing, and being brave and trying new things. ...But what about me? Being brave sounds scary.
Unfortunately, every once in a while, I actually have to put my money where my mouth is.
This fall, I did the freakiest thing of my year and maybe my life.
... I photographed a wedding.
Before you roll your eyes at me… can we all agree that everyone has their own ‘freakiest’ thing?
Maybe it’s public speaking for you.
Maybe it’s sharing your faith with someone.
Maybe it’s that book you know you want to write but tell yourself you couldn’t.
Maybe it's befriending your neighbor
What freaks you out? And WHY aren’t you doing it?
Here's the ultimate question: Is pain-avoidance really the anthem we want to sing?
If we never do anything uncomfortable, we run the risk of carefully slipping into our graves, unchallenged and under utilized. (Is this idea from a book? I can't remember if I read it somewhere or if I just feel it so strongly I think I read it in a book :)
The point is: No one can flex your unique potential for you. That’s on you.
How will you know what you can do unless you try stuff?
Dr. Henry Cloud & Dr. John Townsend “We change our behavior when the pain of staying the same becomes greater than the pain of changing.”
This is true in so many spheres of life.
Typically, if we’re doing something hard, there is a significant (painful) “because” behind it.
We start getting organized, because we can’t stand the mess.
We wake up early, because we’re behind on our work.
We work out, because we don’t like what we see.
I don’t think this is altogether bad reasoning. Sometimes this is exactly what we need. It can serve as the “How’s that working out for you” question. If we hate an aspect about our lives, it SHOULD propel us to DO something about it!
But what if we “changed” or did something scary just because it was good for us?
What if we took the “I could never….” and actually did it just to prove our inner critic wrong? What would that look like?
I’ll tell you: Sleepless nights and sweaty armpits! - That’s what it would look like.
I literally didn’t sleep more than a couple hours for DAYS before the wedding. I was so consumed with the “What-ifs” and wanting to please the bride, that my brain would just not shut off and go to bed.
Before you think I’m lame, remember… we all have our own scary thing.
Being scared isn’t fun. But conquering your inner critic?? Well that’s pretty awesome.
What would that feel like to replace “I could never” with “I bet I could”?
See how different that feels?
I bet I could write a book
I bet I could start a business
I bet I could lose this baby weight
I bet I could start running
I bet I could illustrate kids books
I bet I could...
When will we set down insecurity and just try stuff? Isn’t that what we want our kids to do anyways? How will they learn to be daring and amazing if we're sitting, terrified on the sidelines?
Here’s the deal: You can do way more than you think you can do. The “I could nevers….” Are actually liars. The only way to silence them is by jumping in and proving them wrong.
Once you you prove one "I could never" wrong, guess what happens? The other "I could nevers" start to shake in their boots. Conquering the "could never" actually creates a snow ball effect where the next "could never" doesn't seem as scary. This exact thing happened to me this year when someone asked me to take senior pictures for them. (before the wedding gig) I literally laughed at the thought. "I could never...."....
Guess what happened after the wedding?
The senior session didn't seem so hard - way easier actually.
Guess what happened after that?
A family session
Guess what happened after that?
Starting a whole new kind of photography for a friend's business that I had never done before.
See - snow ball.
So where does your snow ball begin??
On my fridge, right next to my stove, I have a quote from Lara Casey... It's pink and shiny and catches my eye all the time. This quote watches me every time I cook dinner or do anything in my kitchen really. It's nestled among other important things I need to remember. Here's a visual for you:
It is exciting and terrifying all at the same moment.
“You know all those things you wanted to do?”... and I would add... the things you think you can't do?
Let’s do them.
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Ready for some fresh milk?? Yes Please!