“Insanity is doing the same thing over and over, expecting different results.”
~credited to Einstein
“Courage is not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it.” ~Nelson Mandela
After completing the “30 Days of Doing things Differently” I wrote about last month, I realized that it didn’t make sense to go back to doing things I “normally” did if I want my life to continue to grow and change. Writing & sending another newsletter to all of my Pilates & Personal Power Peeps - the NEXT month - is something I “normally” wouldn’t do.
I did it once. Last month. And that was a big stretch for me. I had the courage to make it through my fear last month. In the past, that would have been “good enough” for me. However, I am reminded of the famous quote, “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over, expecting different results.” So if I want new and different things to come into my life, I must do new and different things as well.
And then there is the courage thing…. Two weeks ago I walked on fire. It was an amazingly powerful experience and I definitely recommend trying it when the opportunity comes. When I was done I had the feeling that I could do anything. And yet as I sit down to write, the thought of sending this email out for others to read scares me way more than the potential of getting burned by walking on fire did.
“What if I sound stupid?” “What if no one reads what I’ve written because they already think I’m stupid?” “What if I annoy people by sending too many emails?” “What if people don’t like what I wrote?”
These are only but a few of the thoughts that my ego comes up with as reasons to be afraid. My ego likes to come up with reasons why I “should” be afraid of doing many things. And up until now, I’ve listened to it more than I’d like to admit, because I’ve been scared that my ego might be right. Today, I’m continuing to do things differently. I am choosing to feel my fears instead of ignore or repress them. I’m choosing to have the courage to walk through my fears when they arise, and writing this is one of them.
How often do you tell yourself that you want something different in your life, but continue to do the same things you’ve always done? How many times have you wanted to do something new, but let fear stop you?
In our society the “normal” thing to do is what is familiar and safe. It is “normal” to do what we’ve always done, what our parents and grandparents did (who, by the way, were just doing what their parents and grandparents did). New opportunities come to us and many of us don’t take these opportunities unless we know they are “safe.” Someone else has to do it first. We have to “know” that “it” works before we try it. Or we have to be told by our doctors, priests, professors, or some other authority figure that we should do whatever "it" is. We tend to say that someone is courageous if they “have no fear.” however I truly believe what Nelson Mandela said: “courage is not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it.”
Today is the perfect time to try something new and different in your life. Whether you celebrate the crazy holiday season or not, the craziness is everywhere. So, why not be a little crazy & different yourself? Why wait for the New Year? Try doing something you think you'd like to do in the new year for a day or two, just to see how it feels. If you don't like how you feel, don't do it anymore. Try something else in another day or two. Take it from me, if you find you like the way something new feels, you'll want to continue to do more of it.
The key is to start small and see what new behaviors feel good and let go of the ones that don't. Each time I add a new behavior that feels good and let go of one that doesn’t, the more excited I get to try something else. The more I keep trying and doing different things, the more exciting my life continues to be. I hope that I can inspire you to try something new and different too - BEFORE the New Year....
Hugs & Lots of Love!
KC Bushnell has been teaching Pilates for 17 years and has unknowingly been on a path of self-discovery just as long. The last decade of her life, self-empowerment has been at the forefront of her life everyday.