Taking risks are necessary to achieve your goals and dreams. But fear can keep you from taking any action. You end up staying in your comfort zone so you won't have to worry about what others will think about you. But then you never reach your goals. The key is to focus on how things "look" to you.
I took a risk and began sharing my personal goal of finding my soul mate with the world (see tip#78). I was once consumed with a feeling of embarrassment for not having attained "expected relationships" in life when I hit my 40's. I had focused on self-judgments towards my being single, of my mid-life age and what others thought of all that.
Thankfully, I realized my fears had everything to do with low self-esteem. I wasn't focused on my existing value of what I had in life and the uniqueness of who I was. Self-judgment is a real self-esteem killer. And when I flipped my focus I became empowered!
I later realized that the media was already giving me positive signs of the value my service I was providing with one of my most popular workshop series. For example the Toronto Metro News did an article at the start of this personal development series for singles. The series was called, Improve Your Social Interactions and was an instant success. (click here to download article)
And then back in July CBC Television called me and said they loved the concept of my program designed to build self-confidence, practice interactions in a classroom and then go into a singles event together to put the skills to use. It was exciting to have the CBC film the workshop for their upcoming documentary on dating in Toronto.
Life really does have a sense of humour. The media loved the idea I was a single man helping other singles re-ignite their self-esteem and social interaction skills. They said I was like a male version of Carrie Bradshaw from the TV series, Sex and The City. Afterall, I was writing and sharing these motivational tips and acting as a motivational wingman for my students. I was in the trenches with them where they just needed an ally to confidently meet new people.
For almost 2 years of this program, I have received many heartfelt messages of thanks and gratitude from my students. And because there are those who were coming out of long term relationships they've experienced positive transformations from my teachings on rebuilding their self-esteem and their self-worth.
At first I wasn't going to do this program because I was afraid of people judging me because I was single myself. I was afraid of how I was going to look. In the end the participants proved to me that I had value and that they felt comfortable knowing I knew the pains of being single and that I was sharing in their journey.
I had taken a risk and discovered a powerful new value in being single. I could help others in the same boat. Even my friends in New York City believed my program would be a big hit there!
A Rocky Risk
I am reminded of the risk Sylvester Stallone took in making the most recent Rocky movie, Rocky Balboabecause of what others would think about the idea. The film went on to be a big success because it was filled with the same heart as the first Rockymovie and addressed these same issues on taking risks.
There is a pivotal scene in the movie where Rocky is with his new friend Marie questioning about whether he should go back into the ring to fight even though he was in his late 50's. Rocky wanted to do this but was afraid of what other people would think.
Marie helps him see this is what he was born to do and says: "It doesn't matter how this looks to other people. All that matters is how it looks to you."
"... how it looks to you."
Focus On Your Calling
So if you are feeling an impulse or urge to do something others may judge harshly then focus on your calling. Focus on the excitement you are feeling. If this is something you have to do then do it. Let your passion drive you. Move out of your comfort zone. Take a risk!
Don’t worry about how it will look to others. Someone will eventually see the value in what you are excited about. And they will be the people worth connecting with. All you have to do is step out of your own way.
"Progress always involves risks. You can't steal second base and keep your foot on first."
Frederick B. Wilcox
"You've got to go out on a limb sometimes because that's where the fruit is."
Life Skills & Career Development
© Emmanuel Lopez 2007