Friday, 7 March 2014

Lessons from skiing and other perilous activities...



...So I went on a skiing holiday last week.  My husband has steadfastly been trying to persuade me to give it a go for the last 7 years and I have been equally steadfast in my refusal (2 immovable objects and all that).  Anyway, this year, my 3 year old was going to be having lessons and there was no way, I was going to be shown up by my own child, so I bit the bullet and signed up for lessons! The title of this week's blog came after the first time I fell over and I was further inspired by each subsequent fall.  I won't tell you how many times I fell, but you my loyal readers are worth it :)

The first lesson I was re-reminded of, was that the fear of a thing, is often worse than the reality. In my head I had built up this huge fear of what falling would be like. How painful it would be physically and also to my ego as people laughed at this grown woman falling off her skis. In fact, I kept saying to my husband, "if I break a leg now, it's not going to be pretty!" How many times in life do we build something up into a huge obstacle and end up never stepping out, because we're afraid of failing/falling/looking stupid or all of the above? If we don't try, we may have all our limbs intact, but we will have robbed ourselves of the chance to have a really great adventure- complete with much falling over as we learn. Also, you could just as easily break your leg doing something else. At least trying something new means you get to have fun, while you do! And that leads me to my second point:

Trying and falling/failing is never as bad as you think. Just before I took my first tumble, I kept thinking "oh my, what if I fall over now? How badly will it hurt?" And then I fell. You know what? The snow was surprisingly soft and it didn't actually hurt at all. That was a time I was glad of the extra 'padding' on my behind and the ski outfit :)   In life, we can 'protect' ourselves to a certain extent from the consequences of falling/failing. What I mean is, we can identify the risks and take steps to deal with those risks, so that we are as prepared as we can be to step out. So, say you want to start a side gig. You could resign from your main gig and just go for it and I applaud those of you who would do that. For most of us, we'd do our homework, get any training we needed, raise funding if we need to and then work both gigs together.  These are both valid approaches, as long as they both lead to action. I would have looked a bit weird, all kitted out in my skiing gear, but then refusing to actually take a step. That's what the fear of falling/failing does to a lot of us. We prepare ourselves and then refuse to take the last step, which is action. What have you prepared yourself for, but not stepped out to do yet? What's stopping you? If it's a fear of falling/failing, then I think I may have a solution for that.

Make sure you are passionate about whatever it is you're afraid of failing at. Passion is like rocket fuel. It will keep you going, long after many a saner person would have given up. I didn't expect to like skiing, but from the first time I strapped on those skis, I was hooked. There was something so addictive about swishing down those slopes (baby ones of course) that made me keep getting up after each fall, determined to do better next time. And that my friends is my main point: failure only stops you, if you let it. Let's face it, not many of us are going to be perfect at something, the first time we try it. We usually have to learn, take a tumble, adjust and try again. When I started writing this blog, I have no doubt that I wasn't that great at it, but like skiing, I was hooked and so every day, I work hard to become better. What is it that you long to do? Are passionate about? but scared stiff that you're going to fail at? Can I suggest that you do all you can to prepare for it and then just get going.

There is at least one failure behind every success story and when we share our fallings and our failings, we give other people just the push they need to stop dreaming and start doing too.

Would you like some help getting started with your success story? then call us on +234 706 335 0864 or contact us through the website.


Until next week, go well.

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