becoming someone new

“We are at our most powerful the moment
we no longer need to be powerful.”
― Eric Micha’el Leventhal

I moved last month.

Moving, as anyone who’s done it knows, involves upheaval of almost every aspect of your life, an intense confrontation of details, and having to interact with strangers about things we – or I, at least – know nothing about on a regular basis.

It’s a whole life shake up that can leave a person (me) feeling very vulnerable as a baseline.

I was also working three jobs in addition to running my business at the time of my move, so I didn’t have a lot of time to take care of myself outside of my activities. Instead, I had to take care of myself during them. Here’s how I did it:

Every time I was faced with a task I feared, I opened to the feeling of vulnerability inside me as though it were a direct portal into what I wanted.

I imagined it as a circle before me, and I would dive into it by making the phone call or sending the e-mail or asking the question that I feared would make me look stupid or annoying. The result was a momentary discomfort as my full lack of knowledge was revealed to the appropriate stranger, followed by getting what I wanted or needed.

I embraced my stupidity and lack of knowledge at the beginning, essentially throwing myself under the trains before they could decide to run me over. Making the choice early to face the things fear would have me avoid meant I prevented a multitude of problems from arising and created a great deal of ease.

The biggest secret about facing our fears is it doesn’t take long. Even if the task is ongoing, facing a fear is really just a moment. It’s making a call. Sending an e-mail. Asking for help. The worst part of the discomfort usually lasts only a few minutes, and in most cases you forget it was even there once it passes.

In all my multiple train jumping, only two conversations stand out as worthy of the level of trepidation I felt going in, and both resulted in me getting everything in order with ease.

There’s a famous quote by Jack Canfield, “Everything you want is on the other side of fear.” Temper that awareness with the fact that fear doesn’t last long once you decide to face it.

A few minutes of seeming stupid or foolish is a small price to pay for getting the house, job, partner, dream you want.

At the same time, it’s important to respect that our brains are hard-wired to try to fit into the group, and we fear rejection more than death (hence why most of us will actually jump off a bridge if our friends our doing it). To be okay seeming stupid if that’s what the moment requires is a skill, one I’ve been lucky enough to have been trained in.