If you have to ask yourself if it’s wrong: it’s wrong

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A while back, a friend was wrestling with a right-or-wrong type of decision and praying for discernment. My response: If you have to ask if it’s wrong, then it’s wrong. That same sentiment popped up recently in a Christian women’s group I recently joined. Yet, even those not grounded in Biblical principles know that our intuition—polished over the years through trials and triumphs—offers a decent gauge as far as “gut feelings.” I believe it serves as a warning bell alerting us to booby traps ready to easily derail if we’re not on guard. Or, perhaps we’ve chosen to ignore the flashing lights, only to plunge headfirst into the unknown, regardless. Sure we could end up unscathed. But we also might find ourselves so off track that it takes months—or years—to regain solid ground while we mend the superficial scratches or tend to deeper wounds. Seek that still small voice today. Stay the course. The race has only begun.

What decision are you wrestling with?

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

Breaking free: rote action is no action

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I write about change. About Someday. About setting goals, taking baby steps, chasing dreams. Extending kindness and sparkles. Eliminating toxic people from our lives; hopefulness. Perseverance. What’s next. And then I “get” busy. Push it all to the back of my closet as I flit from task to task. Pretend I’ve taken hold of life by its proverbial horns. But my tiara is tarnished and I’m tired and all I want to do is jump off the non-stop roller coaster and figure stuff out before it’s too late. I think, for me, discontent no longer points to an unrealized purpose but, rather, my own personal purgatory where life isn’t just passing me by (see “Take action…”). Instead, it’s the rotten stench of anguish and despair that almost suffocates and renders me ineffective. Rote action is no action. Busy-ness can only put off, so long, what must be accomplished to escape from the grip of fear: of failure, regret. The unknown. So, what’s next?

How will you break free?

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

Fear is *not* a favorite F word

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Fear can be debilitating. Fear of… failure, the unknown, change, making a mistake, saying the wrong thing, getting hurt, causing pain, running out of time, missing out. Regret. The other day, I made a decision, set my plan in motion and, for several hours, I felt at peace about it. Only, when it came time to execute ‘said’ plan, fear seized and held me captive, resulting in an aborted mission. The solution? I must confront my fears, head on, instead of running away from whatever situation I’m facing. Otherwise, I will never be able to make peace with the past and move forward into the present that’s waiting for me to delight in. But this requires courage that I have yet to access, and confidence to trust in the process. It also requires daily positive affirmations that, indeed, I am good enough. And keep in mind: There are no mistakes. Just life lessons. So that’s one fear we can all say goodbye to.

What is your biggest fear?

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

A reality check of sorts

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[Image credit: Salvatore Vuono]

My current health issues have doubled as a reality check for me, keeping me on my toes with the unknowns.  On the one hand, I think the thrill in life may come from not knowing what’s around the next corner, whatever it may be.  On the other hand, what if we were privy?  A close friend and I talk often about how we’d like to possess the inside scoop to our futures.  Would we approach life more cautiously, or feel safe enough to release our inhibitions?  Would we take the time to get to know someone new, or maybe drag our feet, miss an unexpected surprise or simply quit trying altogether?  Or would fear grab hold of us, choking our enthusiasm?  In some ways, it would be nice to know; in others, it’s probably a good thing we’re all in the same boat.  Finding out as we go can be fun — if we let it.  It’s the perfect way to allow (force) us to focus on the reality we live in, rather than getting lost in our hopes and dreams for Someday.  Do I really believe that?  I don’t have much choice.

Have you had a reality check lately?

On your mark, get set …

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[Image credit: digitalart]

The scariest moment is always just before you start. ~ Stephen King

Go!  It doesn’t matter what it is.  Fear of the unknown can give us a nasty stomach ache, crippling writer’s block, a case of stage fright or keep us from taking chances, big or small.  But I believe if anything is worth doing, then risk — making a fool of ourselves for one — is part of the package deal.  Maybe it’s a speech you’re called on to recite in class, you’re entering your first ever race or you’re ready to begin writing that novel you’ve been dreaming up for years.  It could be a blind date, day one on your new job or putting yourself in a vulnerable position.  If you’re like me, after all has been said and done, you most likely find yourself thinking that wasn’t so bad.  If only we could skip the hard part and dive right into the main event.  But then we may just miss out on learning something new or stretching ourselves to become stronger and more self-confident.  At least it should be easier the next time around.

What’s the worst thing that can happen if you take that first step?