Things That Scare Me

Photo by Tom Barrett

If you read this blog post then you may have a good idea of why I am writing this one.

But in case you didn't, here's the deal.

I have decided every year to do something, or a few somethings, that I am afraid of. As you'll see in my list below some things are small and some things are exponentially larger. Some things are also silly and perhaps nothing to be afraid of at all. But alas, they are on the list and so I am fearful of them.

Since I just celebrated my 27th birthday (by stuffing my face with pizza and watching Disney movies in my fleece pajamas—which, by the way, was my choice) I must strike something off the list.

As a side note, this new annual challenge coincides nicely with something I was planning on doing anyway, which is...

Go on my first solo backpacking trip.

I booked my flight to Bangkok a few months ago and will be spending three weeks exploring Thailand (almost) on my own. I say almost on my own because I will be meeting a friend out there in week two and we'll be traveling together for the remainder of the trip.

As things begin to ramp up prior to my departure at the end of March, I will write more about what I'm packing, planning and feeling so keep an eye out for that.

That said, here are a few other things I will no longer be afraid of over the coming months and years:

- Retreats/conferences/workshops: While I love the idea of attending an event for personal development, the thought of doing it solo and getting vulnerable with strangers is very outside of my comfort zone. But I also know that it's something I would love once I worked up the nerve to do it.

- Public speaking or running meetings/workshops: I used to love public speaking. Now the thought of it makes my skin break out into a cold sweat. But I know I'm quite good at it and overcoming this fear will only open more avenues for me.

- Investing in my learning: Particularly in my writing. I'd love to find a great writing course but I can feel my chest close up a bit when I think about someone reading something I've written. Or worse, critiquing it. But writing is important to me and I'd really love to hone in on it.

- Small group fitness: This may seem like a silly one, but joining a boutique gym or Bootcamp group scares the hell out of me. I don't know how to make friends in an atmosphere like that. Plus, I'm pretty unfit and am afraid of feeling out of place. But I love fitness, I love wellness and I know it would be incredibly motivating.

- Local workshops: Another potentially silly one but the anxiety is real. I feel like I live in a city where there is a lot of opportunities to invest in yourself—whether it's in a skincare seminar or a business workshop—but I am afraid of meeting people locally. What if we follow each other on social media already? What if I run into those same people again? Silly fears that I am ready to squash.

- Swim with sharks: Random, I know. But a really, complete, legitimate fear of mine. I am terrified of sharks. I feel hysterical even thinking about it. But I also would really love to explore the ocean and sharks are part of the deal. I think if I could see them up close, I might be able to feel less fearful of them.

- Jumping out of a plane or bungee jumping: I can't be certain that I will ever bungee jump that sounds, like, actually terrifying. But jumping out of a plane would be a close second and that seems doable. I can't go through life not having jumped out of a plane.

- Going to a movie or having dinner alone: I think I have some deep-rooted fears of flying solo because this is another one that freaks me out. And there are SO MANY movies I'd love to watch and so many restaurants I'd love to try, so I really should overcome this fear and just go enjoy the things I want to enjoy.

- Promote my writing: Barf. This honestly makes me feel sick with nerves. I'd love to eventually write a book but I can't do that if I can't promote myself as a writer. Heck, this blog only gets four views a month and I'd bet you those are my mom (Hi, Mom). So one of these days I'll start posting this on social a bit more and discussing it with people in person because I want to share my writing with the world. I just need to stop being afraid of the world first.

That's all for now but as the months and years go by you can be sure that this list will only grow longer and more elaborate because what is living if you're afraid of nothing? Hah!