Tuesday, May 20, 2014

"Courageous Vulnerability"

Meaning: You're scared of doing something, but you do it anyway.

For the last few days, I've had this phrase stuck in my head. People often remark to me, how amazing it was that I did all the things I did. How did I know to do what I did?

I think there's a false assumption out there that people who do things weren't scared to do them.

We're all afraid of failure, of making mistakes, of looking like an idiot.

One of my coworkers asked me if I'd lecture at a conference for opticians and optometry assistants in Newport, Oregon. I said yes. Then immediately regretted it, thinking I was going to be horrible and everyone was going to be bored at my talk. I procrastinated updating my lectures, and thought over and over how I should have backed out. I had spoken at a conference in 2007; one of the talks went well and one everyone was falling asleep. I was worried I might repeat myself, or worse, have TWO boring lectures.
The weekend of the conference came, and I went to my little room with the projector screen set against the backdrop of the Pacific Ocean. The time came to start, and I pushed forward. Nervous as all hell for the first fifteen minutes, but then it got better and better. The second lecture didn't even have the nervous part at the beginning. 
 It went ok. 
No one fell asleep.
A few days later, back at work, more than one of the attendees told me that they really enjoyed my talk. One said, "Everyone should hear it!" And another said, "Yours were the best all weekend because I actually learned."
 I was overjoyed to hear it. And surprised. I couldn't tell how it went. So yesterday at work, a different coworker asked if I could do a little lecture for their meeting so they could get some extra continuing education. I said, "Yes." And I felt that I could do it. 
All because I did something I was scared to do. 
 That is living life. 

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