If my friends and loved ones know anything about me, it’s that I always have a lot to say. There are many situations in which I feel comfortable to share my views and give advice, regardless of whether or not someone listens to or agrees with me.
When it comes to creative or entrepreneurial endeavors, I am much more shy. There’s something about putting my ideas wide out into the open that brings up feelings of insecurity and doubt. Chief among those feelings is the fear of not saying anything original or groundbreaking. What if I put up a YouTube channel with ideas for improving the viewers’ mental health, but everything I say has already been said (and thus, heard) by everyone else? What can I say or do that could possibly draw an audience any better than the next guy? And why would any of that even matter?…
That last question is perhaps the most revealing.
If I don’t have anything novel or exciting to say, I fear the project will fail. My less rational, more fearful side tells me that if I fail, who I am will be invalidated. After all, I fancy myself to be an intelligent man, a good father, and a skillful therapist and coach. If others don’t agree, will it change how I view myself? As much as I would like to think it would be better to say, “No, because my opinion of myself is all that matters,” I think that response is too immature and simplistic. If there is anything to remember about change, it is that it is not always bad. The wiser part of me knows that shaking loose from unhelpful and inaccurate ideas about myself is a tremendous opportunity for further growth.
The wiser part of me is reminding the fearful part that what matters most is growth.
To grow, I need feedback. To get feedback, I need to either succeed for fail. To either succeed or fail, I need to just say something.
So here I am, saying something; and encouraging you, dear reader, to do the same.