Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Loving the Fear (Not)

I'm going to be brutally honest. I'm having an off day. I'm feeling less 'Love. This. Life' and more 'F*ck. This. Life'.

I'm p*ssed.

Well, maybe I'm not really angry, maybe I'm more afraid…

Honestly? I'm terrified.

You know, tears and vulnerability have never been my strong point. I'm far more likely to scream and get angry than to start crying or ask for help, and today my body is screaming to Let. It. Go.

But. I. Don't. Want. To.

I'm holding on to so much fear right now that I can actually feel it. It's a twisted feeling that emanates from my upper and lower chest and circles from right to left, then spirals inward until I'm almost overcome with pain. As my chest aches I notice that the same grabbing sensation is travelling from my mid-chest down through my abdomen landing somewhere around my Jenny Taylor.

If you've ever had a broken heart, it feels exactly like that.

It hurts.

You may be wondering why I have these feelings. Did I get dumped by the man of my dreams? Did one of my parents just die? Did I lose my home in a bush fire?

Nope.

The reason I'm so full of fear is due to The Love Circle. Yeah, I know, the irony isn't lost on me either. The Love Circle is a meditation/inspirational get together that I started hosting at the end of last year. It was part of an idea that I hoped would eventually work towards me running inspirational workshops. It's filled with love and has attracted the most beautiful and loving people I know. The next Love Circle is tonight and yet, instead of bouncing with glee as I was with the first three, today I'm gripped with fear and stumbling around inside my own body trying to find a way out.

Looking for a way out of The Love Circle…?

Yip. (I guess I need to fill you in).

So, when I had the idea to start TLC (oh wow, I didn't realise that was the acronym of The Love Circle till just now – cool!) Ahem… When I planned TLC, I had no idea what it would become or whether it would ever be anything other than a small get together in my flat. Due to how the group felt after the sessions, we decided to hold it fortnightly. (I had planned on it being monthly). This increased frequency led to a conversation with my flatmate and a realisation that I needed to find somewhere else to hold TLC. It wasn't fair for me to oust my flatmate every second Tuesday and things moved on from there.

There's more to the story than that but the important part is this: The Love Circle is growing and I am terrified that I have made a mistake in starting it. I'm terrified that I'm not qualified to run an inspirational evening that increases people's joy and self-awareness. I'm petrified that people will find out I am just the same as them: petty, incapable, afraid, imperfect etc. All these thoughts have surfaced thanks to TLC and the crazy part is, I never saw them coming.

It sounds counter intuitive that starting a group to bring more love into the world would bring up these fears, but the more I look, the more obvious it is becoming.

At the weekend I watched part of The Moses Code which is a movie similar to The Secret and includes interviews with visionaries and authors such as Debbie Ford, Neale Donald Walsch and Michael Beckwith (among others). Debbie Ford (who passed away this February, RIP) made a really interesting comment that resonated with me. She described how when she had declared she wanted to become an inspirational speaker, her sister had asked her how she was going to do that being that she is angry and bitchy and has a whole bunch of other 'negative' qualities.

Good point.

Turns out, Ford, Beckwith and probably the entire cast had shared similar thoughts and fears about themselves. The very act of publicly wanting to help others had sent them on an incredible path of self discovery that they would never have come to had they not taken that first fearful step. Ford explained how she was forced to look at her shadow side – the side of herself that she was avoiding and ignoring because it wasn't 'perfect'. "Sometimes I'm a bitch," she said. Gasp! But she's a global inspiration!

Beckwith answered from a more global perspective saying that being called to follow our mission is part of the mission. We will never be where we think we should be until the mission is accomplished. That's the whole point.

Oh.

As I ponder this I am realising that's where my fear is coming from. I'm afraid that I'm not up to the job, yet I can't imagine doing anything other than this. And I'm not just talking about The Love Circle either. If you've been following my blogs you'll know I've set up a publishing consultancy (now called Lemondrop Publishing), and I'm writing this blog. In all three areas I am pushing myself beyond my current capability in order to grow. But it's tough. And for the past three days I've been wondering if I can cope with so many challenges despite them being self imposed.

But as I write this I'm answering my own dilemma because I guess I don't have to already Be There. I can figure it out as I go. I can allow myself to stuff things up and get it wrong and let that be part of the process. It's pretty much guaranteed I'll learn the lesson at some point, I mean, that's what I do. I turn myself inside out on a daily basis and do whatever I can to catch any lies or illusions that I'm holding onto. Once I catch them I don't hide them away in a basket, (that would be too easy) I write about them on a blog that is read by over 1400 people! Self-aware? Definitely. Insane? Possibly.

So I think it's fair to say, if I am making mistakes and feel fear about being phoney or sometimes act like a snippy little b*tch, I'll probably eventually work through it so it's really OK.

Phew.

Maybe feeling fear is just part of my journey. Truth is, I've never been one to sit in class and learn, I've always had to take matters into my own hands before I truly understand. The consequences of this are that I continually burn my philosophical fingers, I'm forever breaking hearts (usually my own), and rarely a day goes by when I don't stub my self-awareness toe or shed a snakeskin of self-deceit. But I've never (until now) said that's OK. I've constantly reprimanded myself and harboured guilt and shame for being imperfect.

Which, when I look at it like that is something that could do with being changed. Especially if I really do want to set a good example of how to live with more joy. Maybe this fear is just an accumulation of all the times I've not allowed myself to be perfect in my imperfection. And now that I'm putting myself out there in a bigger (albeit still small) way, some of my old imperfections are seeping out and want to be transformed into greater awareness and increased self acceptance. Which is kinda like saying More Love!

Well, I don't know about you, but I'm suddenly feeling much better!

I started writing this blog because I didn't know what else to do. I was filled with fear and it was surging through my body and causing me physical pain. My first response was to meditate and that led me to writing. Thankfully I have this amazing avenue that allows me to share my deepest darkest feelings. This blog is where I reinvent my shame and imperfections and turn them into gifts. Opening myself up like this is extremely therapeutic for me.

So with that, I thank you for listening/reading and I hope that as I give myself a break from having to be perfect and allow myself to Be Me, that you'll give yourself permission to do the same.

Fear? Bring It!

x