It’s Saturday morning … a few hundred women, including myself, are dialed in to our weekly coaching call to learn how to be more powerful. I’m here to learn how to overcome my weaknesses, my old stories, and my insecurities so I can make my contribution to changing the world. I also want to be a great parent, friend, and wife.
I want to be empowered to take a stand for the things that matter to me.
I want to change the world.
Our coach Claire picks up a call…
“Hi Claire, I’m Susan. I have this big vision for a project I want to create a documentary film on a revolutionary treatment for addiction. I learned about it while I was overcoming my own addictions. What I’m feeling is self-doubt … Who am I to do this? I want to feel worthy of moving forward and manifesting this vision, but I don’t. I feel the potential, I feel the passion, I see the opportunities and yet, I still don’t feel worthy.”
I feel a lump in my throat as I listen to Susan share her passion and her pain because I also struggle with feeling unworthy of my passions, like there is someone out there more worthy than I because of their experience, education, or connections. I have allowed my fears to inhibit my creative process…to stop me from doing important things. A few years ago, I abandoned my own plans for a documentary on Contemporary Middle Eastern artists because I lost the confidence I needed to create such a large project.
Susan is afraid the experts she wants to interview will laugh at her.
She’s afraid of gap in her skills… between where she is and where she needs to be to bring her project to life.
If she doesn’t transform these fears, her film will not get made. The good thing is that it’s never too late to transform fear. What we learn from Claire is that we can transform our fears by looking at them with CURIOSITY. Master creators know that fear never goes away, so we learn how to transform them into something productive.
Fear can be destructive, OR it can be a guide. Unfounded fears can hold us back from doing the work needed to bring our projects to life. When that happens, the world misses out on our unique contributions. And, it makes us feel like shit. Founded fears can show us the necessary skills and capacities we need to develop to take ourselves and our projects to the next level. We must look at our fear and determine if they are founded or unfounded. If they are founded, then we see them as development opportunities.
Author Danielle LaPort reminds us that fear often drives us to contract. The problem for those of us who feel called to be in service to others, to use our freedom, skills and abilities to change the world, is that we really want to expand. We are being called to expand because expansion is critical to contribution.
So how do we expand in the face of fear? We develop our weaknesses and move forward despite our insecurities. I’ve started using EFT tapping to work through my anxiety. Other steps could be: work on being present, take classes or find a mentor or work group. One of Susan’s fears revolve around the fact that she didn’t know how to edit film. That is a valid fear, but it’s also something she doesn’t need to learn to create a film. There are plenty of talented film editors out there who are happy to take on those tasks and execute them masterfully. What Susan really needed to focus on is getting really clear on what it takes to create a documentary film, and then figuring out what she needs to learn, source, and facilitate. It is fear that made this clear.
Despite the fact that many of us who are taking on big challenges find ourselves wondering “Who am I too….?” it’s important to understand that when it comes to creating, it’s not about being worthy or unworthy, it’s about responding to your fears with a curiosity that propels you to develop yourself in ways that allow you to bring your big vision to life.