Five Reasons You’re Scared To Start

You have an idea.  And maybe that is all it is: an idea.

Maybe you’ve had this idea for years but can’t bring yourself to start actualizing it.  Maybe it’s a business idea. Maybe you’re thinking about a new job, or moving to a new city, state, or even country. Maybe it’s a new hobby you’ve been wanting to try, or one you’ve been wanting to bring back to life.

Whatever it is, for some reason you’re hesitating.  It’s a project you can’t start, and maybe you don’t even know why.

I know- I can relate to you.  Because I have been there, because I am still there.

Why are projects so hard to start?  Why do we put exciting ideas and dreams off to the side?  I have five major reasons– can you relate?

1) Scared of Failure

One of the biggest reasons I fail to start a project is that I’m afraid I will fail, and failure isn’t a concept I am keen on.  Failure means you didn’t succeed, and this gives you further reason for self-doubt.  It implies that you are “too dumb”, “too unorganized”, “too inexperienced” to ever succeed in anything you want to accomplish.

The thing is, there are many different ways to view failure.  And while the negative outlook is a very easy one to take, there is also a much better, brighter one.

Hey.  At least you tried.  And trying is not failing- if you didn’t, you would never know the outcome.  Is that what you want on your deathbed?  Knowing that you never even tried to live your life’s dream?

When I start a project, failure is always hovering in my thoughts.  But who knows what can come out of this so called failure.  Maybe this “failure” will lead to more success than we ever dreamed possible.

2) Time Spent on Projects

Many new projects are often time consuming.  Job hunting, or looking for the right place to live, near the right school district, in walking distance to the right shops.  Dreaded networking (especially as an introvert) with necessary contacts for a new business plan.  What if you spend all of this time and energy, and it leads to nothing, or something you actually hate?  What if after all this time, you realize what you’ve done was a mistake?  OR what if you spend all of this time working, and miss out on important life events?  For me, that would be enjoying my early twenties.  Running, hiking, visiting with my boyfriend, spending time with my mom and chocolate lab.

Balance is huge and sometimes it’s difficult to balance everything.  Do you need to relax tonight, or get to work?  When we arrive at our wits end, we know what is best for us.  Taking time out is not wasted time. This project of yours should be fulfilling, not running you into the ground.

I believe this leads to the same concept- even if you don’t succeed, even if you’ve spent months or years on a project, you tried.  And you gained something from it. New ideas, new partnerships, new experiences, new knowledge that you wouldn’t have gained otherwise.  All of this combined creates inner wisdom, and forms the person you wil become.

3) Money

Oh, the M word.  Money.  People are so obsessed with it!  Why? Because we need it. We need to eat, have shelter, drink that wine with dinner.  Go to that Yoga class, get that gift for that wedding or baby shower.  Money is HUGE.

Moving costs, materials for hobbies, the couple of weeks it takes for that new paycheck to kick in.  I understand the anxiety all too well, and don’t believe it’s misplaced.

This is my thought, and it might not work for you, but it tends to work for me:

If you need money and believe it will come, it will be there.

Remember, you have so many resources available to you.  Friends, family, friends of friends of family.  Do they have materials they don’t use that they’d be willing to pass on to you?  What can you take from the nature around you?  What can you get cheap to replace more expensive materials you may need? You can’t always get around the dreaded cost of money, but you can try.

Remember.  You tried.

4) Fear of Success

I think this is a concept that is often over looked, that many don’t even realize they experience.  However, I believe fear of success is real.  What if your business booms?  Or you love your new place of work?  Some people (me) are shy of attention.  Some are afraid they won’t be able to live up to the new responsibilities success will bring (also me). Some just don’t believe they deserve to be successful (I have to say, this is also me),

Something my boyfriend told me when we were in Virginia and I was panicked over who knows what (as usual) went along these lines: There is no actual physical threat present.  Nothing tangible is going to harm you.

You tried 🙂 (getting tired of reading that yet?)

5) It’s Difficult to Start

Yeah.  It is.  It is damn difficult to start any project.  But once you do, you often get on a roll, and keep moving.  So, just do it.  Just start.  I don’t care where you are.

If you’re in the store and an idea comes to you, get your phone out and make a note.  Speak into a recording device.  At work, write ideas on a note pad (I am so guilty of this). At a café or restaurant, be that cliché napkin writer.  Anything you do is progress!!

It is difficult to start.  And it can be scary.  But if we don’t try, we will never know what we have to offer.  We don’t know how we influence the people we come into contact with.  With spoken words, with written words, with a thank you or a hello.  With a beautiful piece of art, or our expansive knowledge of biology or mathematics.

You have something to offer.  We all do.

I’m not here to be a hypocrite- I’m still struggling with this myself.  My depression and anxiety have not gone away, but that’s okay.  I can still take the steps I want to give my life purpose, and personal meaning.  So can you.

Know when to push yourself.  This is easier said than done, but I’ve gotten pretty good at figuring out when I’m just useless, and when I can offer energy into a project.  I have complete faith that you can too.  I also believe that knowing what keeps you from starting is a great step to conquering these fears, and riding your life out how you want.

Do you share these fears and concerns?  What keeps you from starting?

Love you guys!

Shannon

Cacao vs. Cocoa (Happily Eat Both!)

My recent post had me pondering the difference between cocoa and cacao.  The question eventually bothered me enough that I opened the cacao and cocoa powders in our pantry.  After a sniff, I determined they smell the same.  With thorough inspection, I found they look the same.  I did not find a difference in taste.  So, what is it that makes one “better” than the other?

The first (and most important) difference is that cocoa powder is roasted in high heat, and cacao powder is cold pressed.  This means, cacao powder keeps most of the beneficial properties of the original cocoa bean.  That is an abundance of magnesium, which does wonders for stress, heart, and kidney health.  It also fights against free radicals with an army of antioxidants waiting for battle.

Goodbye inflammation, and hello beautiful skin!

However, cocoa powder is not that bad for you.  Seriously.  If you are munching on a milky way, or some product with chocolate as a sub-ingredient with a ton of added sugars, than yeah, it’s going to be bad.  The more processed, the worse it will be. When your cocoa powder is purely “cocoa powder” (search the label for ingredients, my friend), you are not in the “oh shit, should I consume this” situation.

Regular cocoa powder still possesses antioxidants, fiber, and even a wee bit of protein.  Consumption still means protection against free radicals and inflammation!  Cool, right?

Do not stress out picking between the two.  If you end up at a grocery store that does not carry cacao, going for the cocoa without added sugars and other weird unpronounceable ingredients is fine.

Cacao is my personal new bestie, but I will not flip out if I end up in a small town, where cocoa powder is the only option at the only grocery store in a twenty mile radius.

How do you like your chocolate? Dark and slightly bitter, or a richly sweet taste?

Shannon

Visit this post for more powerful benefits of cacao!

Letting Go of Others

I am that person always wanting everyone else to be happy, but never thinking about the consequences.  I am in a constant state of worry over what others are thinking or feeling.  Did I upset them?  Is this going to change our relationship?  Will I be disowned?  Is he/she okay?  What if they are depressed, or need someone to talk to?  What if they think poorly of me because I say no?  If they say no, does it mean they do not like me?

Questions and thoughts are roving through my head, day and night, keeping me on my toes, my blood pressure up, my stress level at the extreme.

If I had given more worry to myself, I would be halfway across the world, living in an apartment or home somewhere exquisite.  I would have left right after graduation, and not given a single thought to my life in Buffalo.  I would find money along the way, making it possible for me to live the life I have always dreamed of.

If I worried more about myself, I would not be in state of worry around the clock.  I would love myself.  My problems that stem from unworthiness would not exist.  I would know that I am worth my experiences, and my need to fulfill my dreams.  I would have the confidence and self-esteem to do so.

I am aware of this now, but awareness is only the first step.  Actions need to be taken, thoughts need to be managed.  It is extremely difficult to transition from years of negative thinking to a positive state of mind.

Nonetheless, it must be done. I deserve to be happy, love myself, and let go of my lack of self worth.

You do too.

Shannon

Hiya!

I am four days into my NutriBullet smoothie a day for…well, forever challenge!  My enthusiasm has yet to let up, so here I am to share more about my NutriExperience.

Today’s smoothie ingredients were:82e2b2619f8db33ab0e05077592a5548

  • A handful of spinach, pineapple, strawberries, and bananas.
  • A scoop of cocoa powder
  • A scoop of chia seeds.
  • Water for the liquid.

Now, Cocoa powder is probably my favorite thing ever, and it is so good for you.  It is actually a Super Food!.  Unsweetened raw cocoa (or cacao, as I guess many people separate cocoa and cacao into different categories) is wonderful for your blood, immune system, and heart health.  It also gives you an extra bounce in your step, and has been known to promote a healthy, happy mind.  My advice to you is that if you ever get bored with smoothies (not sure how you would, since there are so many combinations you can make!), want something more rich in flavor, or have been more down and fatigued than usual, add a tablespoon of unsweetened raw cocoa powder to the mix.  Your taste buds will be delighted, and so will your body!

As I have experienced, forcing myself to eat or drink something I do not enjoy does not work for losing weight, or maintaining good health.  When I first heard of green smoothies, I thought they looked incredibly gross.  The first one I ever made was disgusting, because I used ingredients I already did not care for.  Dress your smoothie up!  If you do not have a taste for spinach use kale or a spring mix.  If you do not like almond milk, use coconut milk.  Add in some honey or cinnamon if that is what you prefer!  A healthy life style works when we enjoy the foods and beverages we put into our bodies. Has your transition ever failed because of this?  Do not worry!  Trial and error is natural as we progress to better health.

In other news, I am beyond excited about spring!  Tomorrow the cold is going to break, and I am inspired to continue my spring cleaning, and create a healthy living environment of myself!

Who’s feeling good?

Love you guys!

Shannon

Withdrawal and Resetting

It’s not cool when you’re prescribed a pill, walk out the door one day, and realize it’s becoming an addiction.  I don’t care what the pill is for.  Pain, anxiety, whatever.  We put a lot of faith in doctors, especially when we truly don’t know where else to turn for help.  When you’re led down a path you think is safe, and later learn that it wasn’t, it is discombobulating and disgruntling.  It can even be life threatening.

About six months ago I went on anti-anxiety medications.  I wasn’t in a great spot in my life.  This is something I recognized, so I went to a psychiatrist looking for help.  He offered a prescription, and I took it.

About a month ago, I recognize things in myself that hadn’t been there before.  Extreme irritability.  Moodiness.  That weird rush I’d get after taking my pill.  The abnormal light headed feeling I used to only get while working out.  I found myself being a lot more forgetful about things that had just happened.  It felt like I had short term memory loss, even when nothing had occurred to affect my mind.

I also noticed that when I was stressed out, I would think about taking another pill.

In my childhood, I was raised to know about the affects of drugs and addiction.  Medication wasn’t something our parents offered freely, unless my sisters and I were very sick.  Our parents told us stories about loved ones who had fallen into unhealthy relationships with drugs.  There were very strict consequences for drug use in our home, and we knew that if we ever touched drugs, our parents would be after us.  So, when I started reaching for another pill, I recognized the warning.  Instead of taking the medication, I pulled my hand away from my purse, and assessed the last six months of my life.

The big questions:

What positive influences did this medication have on my life?

What negative influences did this medication have on my life?

Did one outweigh the other?

Yes.  It did.

So, what did I do?  I heeded my own advice.  I started taking my pill once a day, and two Fridays ago decided it was time to stop.  (May I note: I did not speak to my psychiatrist before hand.  Please don’t be me! Talk to your doctor! I only learned these sudden changes could be life threatening days after I stopped taking the medication.)

What I didn’t expect was the terrible withdrawal I am currently going through.  I think the worst is over, but my body still has to take it slow.  I have never felt so depleted than I did last week:

My energy was gone.  My head felt like it was made of air, and my tongue cardboard.  The nausea was unbelievable, and I could barely move without fear of puking.

Today, over a week off the medication, I feel better.  I’m still tired, and have bouts of nausea.  My head is still light, and I have dizzy spells, cravings, and random bouts of irritability and anxiety.  But I am also somehow less anxious, and more hopeful.

I guess we will see what happens with time.

For now, I need to remind myself to take it slow.  My body truly needs time to recover, and pushing myself might overwhelm my entire system.  As I noted before, I also didn’t consult a doctor before going off of my medication.  That gives me even more reason to be careful, and not push myself into overdrive.

Sometimes, we want to leap to achieve so many dreams but need to take small steps to get there.  I posted last week about “moments”, and having to get back to my life. I do!  I won’t deny that.  But I’m going to start off slow.

I don’t care how long you’ve been on a medication.  If it’s addictive, and if you’ve started to feel those affects, it’s okay to want out.  If your medicine helps, that’s wonderful! Stick to it.  But if it doesn’t, try something new.  I was only on this medication for six months, and believe me, I had no idea I’d go through this kind of withdrawal.

Thanks for you time and support, guys and gals.  I love getting messages and texts from friends, family, and strangers telling me how inspirational my blog has been for them!

Shannon

If you’re afraid for yourself or someone else with signs of addiction:

Talk to a friend, family member, or counselor.

Contact an anonymous line for help:

American Addiction Centers has a 24/7 hotline for phone and live chat!

National Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Information Center is a mouthful! but also offers a 24/7 phone, e-mail, and live chat hotlines.

And there are many other resources out there!

Knowledge is key!  Educate yourself :).

Moments

Sometimes you just don’t feel well, and it’s hard to think, and hard to eat, and hard to be healthy, or keep any sort of routine.  You’re exhausted and want to sit in a corner, and quit.  Hide behind blankets and never step into the sun again.

We have to remember it’s just a moment.  The sooner you recall what makes you feel alive, the quicker you’ll be back on track.

For me, that means:

  • It’s time to get in the gym, after a week of skimping.
  • Drink your water, your tea, and remember healthy eating.
  • Daily stretching routines need to begin again.
  • You have responsibilities, and that’s a good thing!

Moments don’t last forever.  Don’t let them control how you run your life.

Shannon