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.
Chalene Johnson said, “To be insecure is to be selfish.”
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 not 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 wrote 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.
Then somewhere along the way to losing 100 pounds, my testimonial started inspiring people. A passion was ignited to encourage others and the process started with becoming a fitness trainer. Eventually it blossomed into creating This Lovely Place to share more of my life.
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.
Last week Crystal wrote to tell me that my Thanksgiving story about our near-fatal experience saved her life. She recalled the story 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 gratefulness, 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?
Is there something that is the first step down the road you are supposed to travel, but you’re still choosing socks and changing shoelaces?
If you feel scared, that’s a pretty good indicator that you’re supposed to do it. We don’t usually feel much resistance to doing anything ordinary and safe and self-focused. That 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.
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Charlotte Siems is a home-maker, home manager, T-Tapp Trainer, teacher, speaker and author. Her story of losing over 100 pounds with T-Tapp has encouraged thousands of people all over the world. She specializes in making home management and T-Tapp “doable” for real people and real life. She is happy to be a wife and mother of twelve children whom she has successfully taught at home for 25 years.