Do the thing.
The only way to do something scary is to just… you know, just do it.
Profound, right? (sarcasm alert) But it’s true, even if it’s usually only half the story.
Getting over that first hurdle doesn’t mean that the path will be all bubblegum and roses afterward. It’d be nice if having the courage to try something guaranteed success, but life doesn’t work that way.
It can be hard to take that first step, but sticking with it after a fail can be even more difficult. The more I had to push myself to make the leap in the first place, the harder I take the first mistake. And the second. Aaaaand the third. Relentless negatively sets in quickly. “I knew this was a bad idea.” “Why the hell did I think I could do this?” “See, you’re terrible at everything, just go jump in a well.”*
Few people hit a home run the first time they pick up a bat. Being bad at things we’ve never done before, being wrong, making mistakes — that’s just part of life. It’s how we learn. That’s easy to say, and hard to accept, sometimes. I DO expect to get things right on the first try, and I DO make myself miserable every time I make a mistake… and that’s completely unreasonable. I can’t seem to stop feeling that way, though, so I just had to learn to push myself through it.
For me, three mistakes is usually the magic number. If I can make myself stick with it through three mistakes, then I start feeling like I have a handle on it. At that point, any unrealistic expectations have been largely corrected, and I’ve usually managed to do at least ONE thing right. Before I know it, I’m making fewer mistakes and getting more things right. If you’re not careful, that can lead to actually having confidence in yourself.
So just do it. Go try that thing you’ve always wanted to try. (As long as it’s legal, that is. I’m not encouraging you to start that life as a criminal mastermind you always dreamed of…) Try the thing. Do the thing. Let yourself make mistakes. Let yourself fail like no one has ever failed before, and then keep doing it. Eventually, you’ll look back and marvel at how crazy you made yourself back then, because now you’ve GOT this!
*I don’t have a well handy, so that’s not likely. I mean, I’m sure I could find one if I needed to, but that would take more effort than it’s probably worth.