Where in your life are you playing small?
Whether it's at work, in your relationship or at home - fear and self-doubt are never far behind. How many times have you had a big idea or a great opportunity, and before you know it fear pops up. Naturally we avoid, retreat, delay, procrastinate or make excuses.
We feel relieved in the short term, but over time we end up feeling stuck. To move forward with our lives, we need to meet challenges and opportunities with courage instead of avoidance.
The difficulty is that we’re often faced with challenges we haven’t encountered before, so understandably we doubt ourselves. A job opportunity comes up at work or a chance to ask someone out on a date... but the "I've never done that before" excuse comes up.
Luckily, there are many people (not so different from ourselves) who have encountered and moved through similar fears. Knowing who you admire (e.g. A family member who started a business, a friend who had the courage to leave a bad relationship, Oprah, Nelson Mandela, the Dalai Lama) and why you admire them (e.g. because they stood up for what they believed in, because they took a chance, because they don't care what other people think) can help to inspire us and pull us forward.
As Gretchen Rubin so eloquently put it...
“Knowing what you admire in others is a wonderful mirror into your deepest, as yet unborn self”.
In other words, what you see in the people you look up to, is a reflection of your own (perhaps unseen) potential.
These brilliant spirits and noble souls are also fallible humans who stumbled, doubted themselves and started out somewhere (perhaps in circumstances similar to your own). Nevertheless, they rose, overcame and triumphed. And perhaps, what has been possible for them is also possible for you.
The beauty of knowing who you admire and why – is that you can call on their strengths and qualities in moments of self-doubt or personal challenge. As you use these strengths, they become your own.
Take a moment to consider:
How fear or doubt has held you back in your life? (e.g. Maybe you've avoided going for a promotion, leaving a bad relationship, starting up your own blog or going on that trip you've been dreaming of for years)
Now, ask yourself:
What would my hero do right here, right now?
Perhaps they'd email their boss and ask for that promotion, make time to sit down and have that difficult conversation, or book a one-way ticket to that place they've been longing to go.
By asking yourself the simple question “What would my hero do right, here right now?" you can start to live with greater courage, water the seeds of your unseen potential and over time grow into your very own hero.
So go on, be like Beyonce!