08 August 2011

Overcoming Fear (and some thoughts from the middle of the night)

Am I really doing this?


You know those nights where you can’t really sleep…and your mind seems to be more awake than you intend it to be….and those aimless unprovoked thoughts come forward…those thoughts you usually let go unnoticed during the waking hours…

Well, that thought…that question…came forward in the middle of the night and stayed with me even after I woke up at 6 o’clock the next morning. It stayed with me long enough for me to wonder why I felt that way and what caused it.


When I started a blog back in June, I had been inspired to create one because of the Google Site I created about my experiences as a mentor during my senior year. I loved the creativity involved and I loved writing about my experiences with something I thoroughly enjoyed.  Since this was just a requirement for being a mentor at my college, when I graduated, so did the site and I wanted to continue my good feeling. So, almost immediately after graduating, I created this blog.


Really, I had no idea I would enjoy blogging so much and whether anyone would actually read it. But I have enjoyed every moment of it, and I have even begun to realize that I do have people who enjoy reading it. It’s amazing.

So, when that thought came to me in the middle of the night…I had to think about it. When this thought lingered, a part of me wanted to go online and take down the blog and hide it into safe keeping where no bad or negative feedback can get at it.  I wanted to hide it away from people. I suddenly didn’t want to put myself out there like that. I felt vulnerable all of a sudden. I felt unsafe. I felt afraid. And I didn’t want to feel that way…

I didn’t take it down though. I had gone so far already and I didn’t want to go back.

And it was then that I realized that this blog served another purpose…it served the purpose of overcoming fear.


You would be amazed about how fear can overwhelm you and hold you back. The fear of rejection. The fear of failure. The fear of not meeting up to expectations (yours or someone else’s). The fear of letting people down. Fear of that word “no.” No, you’re not good enough. No, we won’t accept your story. No, I don’t like it. Just…no….
And when this thought came to me, I realized how much fear is inside my own head. And that’s a good thing. You know why? Because if it’s inside my own head, it’s something I can overcome.  I really believe that.
And so far, I have not let my own fears of rejection, failure, or whatever it is that may hold me back…stop me from pursuing my dream. And I haven’t taken down my blog. This blog is my way of helping myself with that fear. Really, it’s my first experience of putting myself out there for a lot of people to see…most of whom I don’t know personally. And in fact if you knew me well enough, you’d probably know that I take great care in sharing the stories I write, so this is a big deal for me.


So today, I’m inspired to write because I have put myself out there. I have overcome my own fears. And you know what? I want you to congratulate yourself too if you have put yourself out there in anyway. Whether it’s through the material you’ve published, the blog you started, the story or poem or article or novel you submitted to a publisher or shared with a friend. Congratulations. Today isn’t about whether it’s right, or successful, or appeals to a mass audience. Today is about congratulating yourself for trying at all. If you haven’t put yourself out there in any way…do it. Start a blog. Ask someone to critique something you have written. Submit that piece you have been meaning to send. Don’t hold yourself back today.


Because one day…you will be able to hear that word you have always wanted to hear and it will mean more than any of those no's you have ever heard….because one day you will hear YES.

8 comments:

  1. Great post! This is definitely something every writer can relate to. Fear is a major issue for me, but I keep pushing myself! Thanks for posting!

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  2. Excellent!! Fear can be a gnawing in the gut and difficult to overcome. One of my greatest fears is what will happen when I DO get published. Will I fall on my face? Hide due to my shyness? Hopefully, I will embrace it all, and trust myself enough to know that this is what I want: to write stories and for others to read them.

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  4. Nicole, wonderful post. This stems back to the whole privacy issue. Writing is no different than giving up your privacy, and that's what we as writers must do in order to connect with readers.

    One of my older posts reflects on Internet Privacy and I wrote it back when I was considering going all out on my blog, too. :)

    I hope my link worked! Sorry if not. Glad you got over your fears, too.

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  5. Your Newest follower via GFC! Found you on a Tuesday Blog hop. I would love it if you came and checked out my blog {& giveaways while you're there!} and follow back as well!

    Cassondra / Mama's Passions

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  6. I completely agree! I was leery about putting myself out there too...but sometimes you just have to take that leap :) Thanks for stopping by my blog. I'm following you back!

    http://wherenothinggoodcomeseasy.blogspot.com/

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  7. I have been following your blog and I love reading about your journey as a writer. I can related to your feelings of uncertainty. Putting yourself and your work out there can make you feel very vulnerable. Keep up the good work!
    Sarah @ made in usa challenge

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  8. @Deena Safari - Good for you for pushing yourself!! Fear is such a big issue we all have to overcome! Thank you for reading!!

    @tracikenworth - I wonder the same! How will I handle publishing?? I hope I go all out!! But its important to remember our whole purpose in writing -- like you said, to write and be read!

    @Diane Carlisle - very good point! In order to be a successful writer, you must be willing to relinquish privacy!  I'm checking out the link now! Thanks for sharing!

    @SondraMama - following now! Thanks for reading!!

    @ Candice - yup!! And it's so important to take that leap! Thanks for reading!!

    @Sarah - thank you for reading! I'm so glad you enjoy it! I get worried I may be redundant a bit, so I'm glad to know that you enjoy it!! 

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I love comments! The good, the bad, and the ugly, so tell me what you have to say! And if you like what you read (or at least find yourself entertained), follow my blog to read more. Although I'm not always able to respond to comments immediately, I appreciate every one of them.

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