elizabeth gilbert

Fighting Fear, Finding Lightness

Stress is a pretty constant companion on some level to anyone working a job or running a business. (Or living a life- right?)

And fear is basically a conjoined twin if you're an entrepreneur. So how do people accomplish all these amazing feats all the time when they're accompanied by stress and fear?? How do they even take the first baby step to their big dream?

In my online course (Financial Love for Artists) I work with emerging artists and we take a mindful and loving approach to doing things like opening a business bank account, setting up a pricing structure, and figuring out what the heck they need to do for taxes. And on paper(err...website page) that seems pretty straight forward. And even if you're not an artist there's probably something that's been sitting on your to-do list for many months. So why do so many of us get stuck taking these steps?

Well, we're hanging out with fear and stress. We're buds. BFFs. And we're scared of the "what ifs". What IF my art doesn't sell and I have no money to put in that bank account? What IF nobody wants to hire me for photography? What IF I'm a big freakin' loser and don't make this happen and there is somebody (or many people) waiting to tell me "I told you so" at the end of it? 

It's scary! 

And then again, it's simple. Fear is heavy. It pulls us down, envelopes us and tells us it will keep us safe. Don't make a move, don't take a risk, don't do that thing you really need and WANT to do because WHAT IF?! Better not.

What the brave ones realize, is there is a lightness that comes after pushing past that fear. Once you're on the other side of it you see it wasn't actually that big and scary, but it sure was HEAVY. And that's how people take risks, accomplish things and move up over and over again. They know to reach their goals and get their dreams out of the clouds and into their homes, they must continuously take on fear and pull themselves UP into the light. And it feels good.

Elizabeth Gilbert has a great chapter on dealing with fear and creativity in her book Big Magic.

"It isn't always comfortable or easy- carrying your fear around with you on your great and ambitious road trip, I mean- but it's always worth it, because if you can't learn to travel comfortably alongside your fear, then you'll never be able to go anywhere interesting or do anything interesting." 

It's true, and you don't want to be the most boring person ever, right?! So no, you don't have to try to banish all fears, or pretend you're a total enlightened psycho and have no fears. You just have to know that on the other side of the fear is a lovely clarity and lightness. The lightness comes from not only doing something you didn't think might be possible for you(big pat on the back), but you are continuing on YOUR path. It's not a perfect path. Scooting up, over, and around one fear doesn't mean more won't pop up. It doesn't mean you won't make mistakes. But it does mean you're pursuing what you want. You're taking action. You're BEING who you're meant to be. And that feeling is completely light.  

Peace, love & pixels,