Today I decided to start a blog and for some reason, I am terrified. Blogging is something I have never tried my hand at before and despite coming from a family of journalists, creative writing has never been my forte. I have always doubted my ability of putting pen to paper and convinced myself that no-one would want to read my ramblings therefore putting myself off ever trying.
So this morning as I sit in my office, working on my website and drinking multiple cups of Yorkshire tea I suddenly thought … why? Why have I convinced myself of a destined failing? What is that about?
Do I not preach that there IS no failing in life? Yet here I am, staring at my laptop telling myself exactly that. “You will fail”.
This got me thinking. As humans, we can be confident in so many aspects of life yet accept an absolute certain failure in others. A sense of failure that we don’t even question and just live our lives safe in the knowledge that (despite never actually giving them a go…) there are just some things we’re not capable of.
One of my favourite stories is that of Thomas Edison. The man who invented the light bulb. This was not an overnight success, having around 1000 unsuccessful attempts before finally achieving his goal. When asked how it felt to have failed 1000 times Edison responded that he hadn’t failed, he had found 1000 ways it didn’t work.
If only we were taught this lesson early on in life. That there is no failure, only feedback. Stop and think for a moment, back through your life, of any events that could have been so different had you had this perspective. How you might have viewed your school years knowing that you never failed, you merely found new ways of something not working. Gaining new insights, new feedback. No failed relationships, just steps towards you discovering the right type of relationship for you. No failed job interviews, just steps toward finding how to perfect an interview technique or in fact, steps towards discovering a job that matched your skillset and personality.
So here I am… pondering all this and wondering why I never chose to write. Maybe I’m not Shakespeare, Tolstoy, Austen or Woolf. Maybe I’m just discovering new steps of how not to write. Maybe it doesn’t matter because what is fear of failure for really? Who does it benefit and what do we gain from it? What would you gain if you put your fear to one side and did it anyway? What kind of nudge would you need to step away from comfort and go get yourself some feedback?
Ask yourself these questions today… It might just be easier than you thought.
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