As the New Year approaches, I, along with you, will replay every single moment of this year over and over in my head. All of it, the bad, good, insane, and awkward events that shaped 2017. A few things scared the bejeezus out of me: the state of our country, stepping on my new puppies leg, the black mold in my apartment, quitting my long time job, and pitching my scripts…to name a few. I’m an over thinker, that’s not a secret, but I started to really delve into a few of these fears, and how to let them go, or at least use them for our benefit. 4 Fears to Leave in 2017:
1) Fear of Success: This is a fear many of us have but don’t fully recognize. Success is scary. There is so much that comes along with it, mainly, pressure to keep it up, and this is where the fear creeps in. We all want to be successful in life, no matter what that may look like. My definition of success may not match yours, but I can guarantee that the fear of obtaining and keeping it is a real emotion we both share. Let’s agree that we will leave this fear in 2017 and not let it dictate how we go about accomplishing our goals in 2018. One day all of the sacrifices and hard work will pay off, or, you may have already achieved success and are in panic mode trying to keep it up. Don’t focus on all of the what-ifs, and live for right now. Use that fear to push you past the point of success you have dreamed up for yourself. Believe in the impossible, and watch the universe unfold around you. You deserve it.
2) Fear of Failure: Failure is a bitch. Seriously. I have failed at literally everything I have attempted, tried, or accomplished. Yes, I typed accomplished, because I had to fail more times than not to be able to accomplish whatever it is. This year I pitched scripts to executives, managers, production teams and even executive assistants, and was rejected by almost all of them. It comes with the territory. What are you afraid of? Is it putting yourself out there, feeling as though you’re not talented or educated enough, feeling as though you’ll never succeed?
Let that fear fuel you. I do all of the time. Writing a blog post, script, screenplay, auditioning. etc. are all scary as hell. I open myself up to severe criticism, hate and judgements daily, but how else can I reach my dreams and goals of becoming a successful actor/writer. The nervousness is normal. Fearing failure is normal, but it cannot exist in an accomplished world. You will never become an actor, writer, lawyer, engineer, disney princess or whatever the hell it is you want, if you allow fear to lead your life. Use fear, don’t let it use you. Let 2018 be the year you put yourself our there. You earned it.3) Fear of Asking for Want You Want: Asking for what you want, especially as a woman, can sometimes be scary. In relationships I have always held a fear of asking for what I really wanted, and that fear bit me in the ass every time. Those days are done. Why the hell are we afraid to ask for what we want from our partners? How can we truly experience one another if we don’t fulfill our own needs first? Stop saying, “I’m fine” when someone asks you what’s wrong, and say how you feel, and tell them what you want/need to feel better. This applies to non-romantic relationships as well. When you interview for that new job, ask for the pay you know you deserve. You may not get it right away, but don’t settle out of fear that you never will. And if you have to work your way up to it, then get to working! You can do it.
4) Fear of Taking Risks: This one is a doozy because if you take a risk, the first three fears on the list are bound to pop up right? So what do we do…do that shit anyway! This year marked the fifth year for me at a job I absolutely hated. It depressed me so much that I would cry on the hour long commute to work almost daily. The only positive about the job was that I had my own office, so I’d literally write scripts the entire workday-in-between my work duties-and it gave me health benefits. I had to pay rent, bills, and just suck it up.
I began listening to motivational speeches I found on youtube every single morning. Everyone from Tony Robbins, to TD Jakes and just random mixes of hour long speeches to motivate and inspire me, and that simple act changed my mindset completely. I had to take action and stop having a pity party about being in a job I hated. So…I quit. Now, it wasn’t all peaches and cream. I have always had more than one job, so that helped a tiny bit, but I no longer have those health benefits, or that paycheck coming in. I work two part-time jobs, and left my apartment, moving back home to save money. By far, leaving my job, apartment, and the huge pay cut has been the scariest things I’ve ever done, but I took a risk, and have been able to audition, write and pitch more than ever before.
I’m not telling you to quit your job, give up your apartment, and move back home like I did. What I am telling you is that your mental, emotional and spiritual well being means more than anything else. If you’re feeling stuck, depressed, unhappy, and at a job or point in your life where you feel you’re not working towards your goals/dreams, then take a risk, no matter how small to change the path your life has detoured on. Do I miss my paychecks? Hell yah, but my mental and emotional health was deteriorating at a rapid pace, so I took a risk. You can too.
What fears are you ready to leave behind in 2017? Leave your comments in the section below!