“Freedom lies in being bold.” – Robert Frost
While he is more famously known for his “road less traveled”, Robert Frost makes a powerful observation with this line. True freedom comes from stepping outside your comfort zone, from doing what you desire most despite your fears. Being bold is not easy. Far from it. It is much easier to walk away…okay, maybe even run away…to hide in the comfort of the way things always have been and/or the way everyone else expects them to be. Often, being bold requires confronting your fears and personal demons. This is not fun stuff we are talking about here…but the results in the end can be life-affirming, revitalizing and down-right amazing. Oh, but that first step…
As with many things in life, the first step is always the most difficult. Getting up enough courage to try can seem impossible without the right amount of self-confidence, encouragement, or support. We can find ourselves feeling overwhelmed with a fear of failure, scared of what others will think, and unable to move forward.
For some people this is not an issue…they have the self-confidence and internal drive to just go ahead and take that first step. But for many of us who lack one or both of those things, that first steps is much more difficult to take. That’s why I advocate taking small steps in the beginning to build your self-confidence if you are struggling with that – build upon your successes, one by one. If it is something you are truly passionate about, your internal drive is there…you just need to get over that “lack of self-confidence hump”.
We, ourselves, are the main obstacle that gets in our way. We get ideas in our heads that convince us we can’t do something, shouldn’t do something, and that we will fail miserably if we try. Our minds, also often referred to as our egos, are creatively destructive in that they can manifest all kinds of scenarios that play out in our heads as to why we should not take that first step. But what we find when we dare to take that first step is that what our minds have been telling us just isn’t true. Even if the results weren’t exactly what you had hoped for, it never ends up as bad as our minds would have us believe it will.
Don’t allow your mind…your ego…to paralyze you and thus rob you of the freedom to live your life on your own terms. Be bold. Take that first step, no matter how small. Then celebrate yourself for taking that first step as well as the successes you have achieved because of it. Then notice how taking the next step is just a little bit easier. Whether we use the analogy of winning a race, running a marathon, or eating an elephant, the message is the same – you don’t have to achieve it all in one step…you can reach your goal by taking small, intentional steps.
So take a deep breath, know you are going to succeed, and be bold…take that first step.