What’s the worst that can happen?

Fear is the biggest saboteur of success.  We often let fear rule our lives and make decisions for us.  In fact sometimes we allow fear to decide things for us that we really want to do.   When we experience fear, it’s normal to react to the emotion rather than the actual potential outcome.  As humans, the natural response to fear is flight or flight.   We either get the hell out of there as quick as possible or we stay and fight for our lives.

When we talk about following a passion or deciding to take on a new venture, the fear we experience can either make it or break it for us.  Unfortunately, for a great number of people, it breaks us and we never realise our dreams.

The next time fear stops you in your tracks, stop for a moment.  Try not to react instinctively to the emotion itself.  Think logically about it.  What’s the worst that could happen?  No seriously, the real life, honest to yourself, worst that can happen.

Could you be told NO?
Could you be rejected by someone?
Could you lose some money?
Could you be a little uncomfortable for short time?
Could it not work out?

Are any of those things really so bad?  Would life still go on?  Would you still be able to function?  Could you still be able to wake up to a new day tomorrow?  Could you perhaps even possibly learn something along the way?

The reality is far less scary than the thought.  The next time you are stopped by fear, ask yourself – What is the worst that can happen?  I am pretty confident that you will find it’s not really as bad as you’ve talked yourself into thinking it is.

One man’s trash

This week it’s hard rubbish collection in my neighbourhood.  I love hard rubbish week.  The fanatical spring cleaner in me enjoys the annual de-cluttering around the house that hard rubbish collection affords.    The sticky beak in me enjoys seeing what others have been collecting in their nest and what junk they have been accumulating over the past 12 months or more.  The scavenger in me is excited at what hidden treasure I might come across.  Perhaps I might come across some wonderfully useful item that I desperately need.  Or perhaps my neighbours will decide to let go of that one thing that will make my life complete.
Unlikely, but you just never know!

My 10 year old who has an imagination to rival Steven Spielberg, with his friends, have found numerous pieces of unwanted junk that they believe will be the thing they need to complete their sci-fi home video creation that’s in the making.  And I’m not kidding when I say I may have a young James Cameron on my hands!

Hard rubbish fascinates me for another reason also.  It’s amazing watching how many scavengers are out searching through the junk.  Searching through rubbish.  Patiently lifting, sorting, sifting through the garbage of another hoping to find an item that they will treasure.  Quite literally, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.

I think I’ve counted about a dozen foreigners traversing down my street in their cars, trucks and even vans, helping themselves to ‘our’ junk.  They’re not hard to spot.  I live in a court and we pretty much all know each other.   Anyway, I have no problem with that, it’s out on the street to be thrown out so good luck to them I say.  And it’s actually not illegal.  Anyway, I digress.

My point today is that within our lives, so many of us judge ourselves by the material possessions, the values, the opinions and the qualities of others.  We wonder what others have and we want it.  We try to live up to other people’s standards.  We feel inadequate if we don’t have the latest gadget that our friend has.  We want to have the same hairdo as a celebrity.  We want the same body as a movie star.  We want to be like our buddy.

Taking a lesson from hard rubbish collection, one man’s junk is another mans’ treasure and so who are we to compare ourselves to others?  Who are we to judge what is ‘great’ about someone else’s life.  For all we know, that gorgeous dark wavy hair that we covet on our best friend might be her most despised physical characteristic.  What you consider a burden in your life might be the ideal scenario for someone else.

How about we let go of other people’s ‘stuff’ and simply focus on what our ‘treasures’ are because we are all different. Stop comparing and start living.

Love your life, flaws and all.  It’s the only one you have.  If you don’t like it, change it and if you can’t change it, learn to live with it.

Things are not always as they seem

Things are not always as they seem.

This is my 10 year old son.  There was a not so nice incident.  That’s NOT makeup.

I could tell you he had a huge fight with a bully at school and that we spent several hours in emergency at hospital having him assessed as to whether there was any potential eye damage.  I could tell you that he was sent to x-ray to make sure there was no fracture or concussion.  I could tell you that he had to wear a patch over his eye for a week and was miserable having to walk around looking like a pirate.

I could tell you that he’s been in terrible pain and suffering headaches for days as the swelling slowly goes down.  I could tell you that for a while his eye was glued shut with the swelling and pus oozing from the corner of his eye (sorry for the graphic image).

I could tell you all this and based on the picture, you would probably believe me.

In actual fact, this was the result of a little run in with the peak of a friends cap and didn’t cause any pain or problems apart from appearance.  He is fine and has no after effects whatsoever.  Thank goodness.

Things are not always as they seem.

What are the things in your life that you may not be seeing as they really are?  Are you making a drama out of something based purely on how it looks to you?  Is the real story perhaps not as bad as you are seeing it? Are you missing out on something wonderful because your ‘reality’ is something that you’ve actually just created in your mind?

The answer is very likely YES.

Lose yourself

A few weeks ago I was fortunate enough to go along to a business lunch where the amazing Layne Beachley was giving the keynote speech.  What an amazing woman!

I must admit, I am not a surfer (I had my first lesson at age 39!) and I have never taken that much interest in Layne’s career.  I have certainly missed out on witnessing some amazing achievements – my loss!   Anyway, hearing her describe her career, her ups and downs, her incredibly sad childhood and her struggles with chronic fatigue and depression to go on to win 7 World Championships was fabulous.  She speaks with such passion and enthusiasm, it would be hard not to be inspired by her story.

One of the things that stood out to me was what gave her inspiration.

Eminem.  That’s right, the American rapper.

Eminem’s song ‘Lose yourself’ was what gave Layne her push to go forward and win her 7th World title.  She was tired, she had had enough of the pressure, she was ready to hand the torch to the younger riders and Layne told her story of how she almost gave up prior to going through to her 7th World final and how her favourite song ‘Lose Yourself’ was what snapped her back to reality to give her the edge to go out and win.  I thought it would be a great idea to share those great lyrics.

This also happens to be one of my favourite songs as well.  I’ve taken the liberty of extracting the lyrics I want to highlight.  I hope you take some inspiration from these:

Lose Yourself – Eminem

“Look, if you had one shot, one opportunity
To seize everything you ever wanted in one moment
Would you capture it or just let it slip?

“You better lose yourself in the music, the moment
You own it, you better never let it go
You only get one shot, do not miss your chance to blow
This opportunity comes once in a lifetime

“Success is my only option, failure’s not

“So here I go it’s my shot.
Feet fail me not, this may be the only opportunity that I got

“You can do anything you set your mind to, man”

Thanks Eminem.   Couldn’t have said it better myself.