What You’re Supposed to Be Doing

Have you ever been in an audience when the speaker or performer is painfully self-conscious and insecure?  How did it make you feel?  We usually start feeling uncomfortable and nervous ourselves.  We may sympathize with the person on stage, but their emotional and physical energy affects our own.

We’ve all felt insecure and self-conscious, but maybe never thought of it this way:

To be insecure is to be selfish.

Chalene Johnson

When we think about it, it’s true that insecurity and self-consciousness are rooted in self-focus. It’s only thinking about what others will think of me, how it affects me, and how I feel. It’s focusing on how what I say and do could affect others’ lives in a positive way.

For many years I avoided writing or doing anything that would put me in the public eye. I told myself “it wasn’t time yet” or “I didn’t have anything to say.” I questioned whether anyone would want to read anything I wrote, even if I did write it. Insecure and self-focused, for sure.

Underneath it all was a fear of exposure and vulnerability. A painful childhood taught me to protect myself and play it safe.

Eventually a long, convoluted path led to starting this blog.

But let me tell you folks, it took a lot of personal growth and working with mentors and putting one foot in front of another to open myself up. It was hard.

Then came the day when Crystal wrote to tell me that my Thanksgiving story about our near-fatal experience saved her life. She recalled the blog post when she had similar symptoms, then got help and was told that the CO2 levels in her house were near-lethal. She would have gone to sleep in an hour and never awakened.

That, my friends, was stunning. My first reaction was gratitude, then a cold chill. What if I had never done the work, never gotten over my stuff, and never written a word? What if I had remained self-focused and safe?

I feel compelled to ask you these questions: What is it that you are supposed to be doing but you’re too scared to do? What things are bubbling under the surface in you that you keep pushing down and justifying why you’re not doing them?

Is there something that is the first step down the road you are supposed to travel, but you’re still deciding which shoes to wear?

If you feel scared, that’s a pretty good indicator that you’re supposed to do the thing. We don’t usually feel much resistance to doing anything ordinary and safe and self-focused. Staying safe keeps us from affecting others’ lives, so why would we meet any obstacles?

Come along with me. Let’s take our eyes off ourselves and look at the possibilities for helping others. You might change some lives, and you might even SAVE some.

4 Comments

  1. Beth Heilman says:

    Charlotte, you inspire me. I listened to you on Sandi’s Total Online Blueprint and related so much with your story. You’ve touched so many lives in a positive way by sharing yourself and there are thousands more that need you. Thank you so much for stepping out from behind the curtain. The world is richer for it.

  2. Oh, that cut to my core this morning, Charlotte! Truth hurts sometimes!  Thanks for speaking the truth!

  3. I can’t even begin to tell you how spot on this is with exactly where God has me right now. Go you, you are an inspiration to many!

  4. anonymous says:

    Thank you for an insightful post. I hadn’t realized that the abuse I suffered as a child  was the root cause for this. I always have felt like I had nothing worthwhile to contribute and that everyone would think I’m stupid for expressing myself. Would you believe that I have a doctoral degree (from before I had children and started homeschooling) and I still feel this way! So education level has nothing to do with it.
     The TTapp forum has been such a wonderful healing place for me, because it’s so “safe” and Teresa makes sure it stays that way. I avoided posting for a long time because of those nagging inner voices that would say “you’re stupid”. Or when I did post at first, I would feel like “why would anyone want to hear my question/comment”. God’s been doing a healing work in me over the past few months, and I’ve realized that I have just as much right to post and ask questions as anyone else and that if anyone thinks what I’ve said is stupid, that is THEIR problem, not mine 🙂

    Thank you for bringing something to light that I needed to hear!

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