The new year always brings with it a sense of nervous anticipation for me. In many ways I actually feel a little anxious as I begin to venture into another 365 around the sun. Do you ever feel that way? Slightly reluctant and trepidatious about what may lie ahead, about how to start the year in a meaningful and intentional way?
I sat with my hubs on the lawns at Kirstenbosch yesterday, just us and our books with the kids at their first day of school, and I began to think about why it is I feel like this. I tried to unpack these feelings and make sense of why the anxiety creeps in at this time of year, why I hesitate to start the year off with bang, taking the plunge and getting my claws stuck in to the good stuff from the get go.
Slowly the question came to me: “What are you so scared of Leigh?” Like a lightning bolt, it hit me in the gut and I sat upright in a simple moment of realisation. I looked at Brendon and said “Do I make excuses a lot babe? Do I doubt myself a lot?” He looked at me and almost rolled his eyes and said “Don’t you remember having this exact same conversation last year this time? You do babe, you doubt yourself far too often. As a mom, a potential business woman, a friend and even a wife”.
Wow. Hard to swallow, but true. I HAVE had this conversation a few times before. Too many times.
I think It’s pretty obvious why I do. I hold back because I’m scared, because I’m terrified of failing. Because in many ways I already see myself as a failure. I ease my way into new years and new things ever so slowly, without fully investing myself from the start because I’m afraid I’m not going to do what I have set out to do. I’m scared that If I put my all into something and actually do what I say I’m going to do, I may disappoint those around me. Or worse, myself.
So I wait. I sniff the new territory long and hard before I even BEGIN to take action. I sit and wait for what I think is going to be the perfect time to make that dream a reality, to start that new business, to lose those extra kilos, to run that marathon. And I always have an excuse just waiting to use should I feel the need to cop out, telling myself : I’M NOT CAPABLE.
Self-doubt is a monster. And for me It would seem it usually rears it’s notorious head more than ever at this time of year. It tells me I’m not capable, I’m not good enough, I don’t have what it takes. Self-doubt takes away any sense of power and any sense of control. It tells me I have already fallen short before I have even started. It has me playing it safe time and time again, year after year.
So why am I sharing this all with you? Well I guess to say I’m tired of it and I want something to change. I want to prove myself wrong and stick it to the self-doubt. I want to stop undermining myself and playing it safe. This year, more than ever, I want to see change in these areas and more so, I want to see me accomplish the many things I have set out to in my head.
What about you? What’s your story? Have you got a list of things they you feel are too daunting to accomplish out of fear of failure? What’s your excuse? What’s holding you back?