I have been riding the FEAR train for the last several weeks. My fears have resulted in procrastination. And that’s why this blog has sat here unattended for the last several weeks.
This blog is not going to be a series of personal confessions or self analyses. But I have learned that in order for me to be happy with myself and my life, I have to be honest about what is really going on. So I am taking a risk and telling on myself in public. And yes, this is scary, too!
The FEAR train
I did a bit of tossing and turning last night trying to figure out why I was having such a hard time sitting down to write a blog post. I had an idea – several, in fact. But I could not make myself sit down and write a post.
But I could spend time with Google and do all kinds of research about blogging and how to do it successfully. I visited sites that gave me good blogging advice and even invested in a couple of excellent books about blogging. And the more I researched, the more suggestions I found about how to blog successfully, the more afraid I became.
That FEAR train began to pick up speed, adding cars of self-doubt as it sped along. Downhill, of course.
FEAR that I couldn’t come up with catchy headlines for my posts (like all the how-to-blog sites said they needed)
FEAR that I couldn’t figure out how to utilize keywords (to make Google happy)
FEAR that I would screw up whatever SEO I might attempt. (plugins don’t do everything)
FEAR that I wouldn’t have ideas or topics anyone was interested in.
FEAR of making a mistake.
FEAR of not doing it “right.”
The fear list kept growing. And the blog…well…didn’t.
The fears fed the procrastination. As the days passed I began to hear that critical voice telling me I might as well just quit now, I was never going to post anything new. I might as well just admit that blogging wasn’t for me and I should just stop, take down the website, and save all the money I’ve already invested in beginning this project.
Boo-hoo-hoo. Defeat and depression loomed. Self confidence and enthusiasm plummeted.
Applying the brakes
Thank the Universe (and Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way) for morning pages. I have been here before – blocked, stymied, frozen with fear of making a mistake, of not doing it “right.” And because I have experience with these fears, I also have discovered a simple solution. In a writing workshop many years ago, author Alice Orr said the words that I use as a mantra in so many areas of my life today:
DO IT ANYWAY.
Picture the plank, the abyss. Close my eyes, cross my fingers, and start walking. Regardless of the fear,
DO IT ANYWAY.
A new route
The takeaway for me is that it is okay to have fears, but to not let those fears stop me from moving forward. I am not locked into what others think I “should” do to create a successful blog.
I have a lot to learn but I don’t have to learn it all in one day. And I don’t have to do it perfectly. It is okay to learn as I go, stumble, make mistakes, and move forward.
The most important thing is to be myself and, despite any future fears, to just
DO IT ANYWAY.
Somehow the Universe works things out.
Have you been on the Fear train lately? What has helped you disembark and DO IT ANYWAY?