Sometimes we get trapped in our fears. No place to turn to. Or so we think.
A middle age woman wrote to an agony aunt telling her that she hadn’t been romantically intimate with a man for five years and asked how she could get out this cage she had trapped itself inside of. The agony aunt recognised and acknowledged the woman’s situation. She praised where the woman crying out for help was in her life and acknowledged how difficult it was to get back into relationships and feel intimacy, friendship and trust again. If she continued creating greater mental barriers, the more difficult things would become.
The agony aunt advised the woman to take small steps such as signing up for a dance class where she would be able to hold hands with men and press some flesh, practice talking to strangers, harmlessly flirt with men in appropriate situations and perhaps even sign up to an online dating agency.
For anyone starting a small venture or turning an idea into a viable product or service, mental barriers may well appear. It’s not easy to go straight into something that can be as challenging as starting a small business without some fear and apprehension.
Have you experienced such fear of the unknown and unexpected? How have you dealt with it? What lessons have you learned?
A task can seem overwhelming unless you break it down into small steps. It’s like eating a pizza one slice at a time rather than trying to gobble it up all at once.
When I hiked to the top of Kalk Bay mountain recently I may not have even taken the journey if I was aware that it was going to take four hours. Even though I was unfit for hiking, I started right from the bottom of the walk putting one foot forward at a time. It required deliberate and carefully paced energy to get going, especially in the first 20 minutes of the hike. After this it was strange because I suddenly had a burst of energy which then equipped to me for the rest of the entire journey.
Starting something new can be viewed as a fear trip or an adventure. It’s just not a simple matter of flipping the way you look at it but requires deep insight into your motivation, positive attitude and wanting to find meaning through the work that you do.
Tarthang Tulku says: “Life exacts a price for less than full participation.” He says that it is important for us to see that our survival depends on our willingness to work with the full power of our minds and hearts to participate fully in life.
Rather than dreading or struggling with each of life’s problems anew, says Tulku, you could look at the situation and think how what would happen if your highest aspirations materialised. Fear causes us to block our flow of energy, creates stress in body and mind. If we participate fully in what the nature of our new products or service or small business demands, then it is likely that we will discover more energy and the more we will learn and more skilful our actions will become.
It’s certainly not only a lonely woman of 48 years who can sit paralysed for five years not moving forward in her life. Those who know it is in them to start something new, something from scratch, may be trapped in even worse conditions for years yet not know how to move forward.
Even existing business owners faced with competition, rising costs, unfair and unjust legislation and predatory competitors, sometimes stare at the oncoming headlights like rabbits in the road. Each small step we can invent for ourselves to take increases our creativity and expands possibilities in our life.