I fear no one will relate to my writing.
I fear no one will like my art or understand it.
I fear I wont become successful doing what I love.
I fear my work will not be acknowledged.
I fear I am not good enough
I fear I am not smart enough.
I fear I am too quiet and awkward.
I fear I am too all over the place and am not focused enough.
I fear my dreams will always be just dreams.
I fear putting myself out there because the world will eat you alive with no remorse.
One thing we all have in common is Overcoming Fear.
This topic is pretty fitting and a bit ironic in a way because this is my first blog post. So in many ways, I am challenging some of my fears while working towards some of my many goals!
Last week, I came across this article Interview: Frank Ocean From Oyster #103 while at work and immediately forwarded it to my friend who, like me, can relate to what Frank Ocean expressed about passion and transition. This article was just another motivator for me to keep moving through my fears in order to create the life I want. Thank you Mr. Ocean and Oyster Mag.
In regards to his passion, he states:
“I didn’t even have a parent who encouraged what I did […]. [But] my attitude was pure. [….] I love to write and express myself in that medium, so that was the pure part — just the love of doing something, but there was also this fantasy of what the lifestyle would be and what the trappings of success would be. There are different little montage clips that you make up in your mind, like what a day in the life would be like once you’re a fully grown whatever-you’re-going-to-become, you know?”
Yes, Mr. Ocean, I know. Very much so. Like Frank, my love for writing is pure. It has been most rewarding and healing during times of depression and isolation and when I was unable to express myself in any other way. Also, like Mr. Ocean, my passion for writing was not highly encouraged or taken seriously growing up (and perhaps I did not take it seriously either). So this, along with my desires to bake, help people emotionally/mentally, and tell stories through film, were often left inside my head as mere fantasies. These montages of what my life would be like as a successful “xyz” have been playing in my head since I was a little girl. It was not until recently that I decided to take steps toward creating these montages outside of my head.
Which brings me to the point of my current transition—something Mr. Ocean also talked about. He states:
“… but there was a transition — and it wasn’t like I just woke up and had an epiphany, but it was a transition where I began to realise that if I didn’t really begin to focus on the work, I couldn’t see any way for me to become who I wanted to become. …..Instead of wanting to get to a certain level of fame […], it was more like, “How well can I develop my skill set?” […] “How far can I push my creativity? If I’m gonna do this — if I’m gonna be a singer/songwriter — then OK, I’m a singer/songwriter, but how can I be the best?”
For me, that transition started about a year ago when I decided to make a conscious effort to put myself “out there” for lack of a better term. Though I took little baby-steps, I knew my passions to be a writer, a filmmaker, a baker, a life coach, and interior designer, among other things…were not going to come to life by simply thinking about them. I knew I had to start DOING something about it. New York City can be a scary place, especially when you are pretty much living in the city solo, and networking in the city has always felt so phony to me. So I was a bit hesitant and a lot scared but mostly determined. My first step was to reach out to a friend in Philly who I thought may know of someone in NYC who works in the film industry. I was fortunate enough to be correct; and that small gesture landed me a “Production Assistant” role on a webseries created by a guy who has written and directed two featured-length independent LGBT films. It was a whole hell a lot of work and even more overwhelming for someone like me who can be pretty rigid and does not like a lot of chaos going on. In the end it was worth it, and I am forever grateful for the learning experiences and opportunities it continues to provide me. Currently, I am working on writing Season 2’s mid-season finale!
Thus, the transition of actually doing what you love and developing your skill set can be awfully scary. It wont always be easy nor smooth but we should not continue to allow that to stop us. We have to keep pushing forward. Letting go of the fear and voices in our heads by moving toward what makes us uncomfortable and vulnerable is one of the keys to true success. Because deep in our hearts and minds we know it is what we need to do to make those montages/fantasies of success in our heads become our realities. We know it is the only way we can truly be free.
For many of us, we also may sometimes feel like no one believes in us or that our dreams are unattainable. These are the stories we tell ourselves, the stories that leave us stagnant or living a mediocre life. We all deserve to live in bliss and within our fullest potential. If you are like me, you may sometimes get caught up in the chaos of life and put your dreams on hold or bury them all together. To help me during those moments, I added reminders in my room. For example, I have a wall decal quote over my bed by Henry David Thoreau that reads “Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.” Followed by a wall plaque that says BELIEVE and a vision board that I created geared towards my passions of writing and film. I see these every night before I go to bed and first thing when I wake up in the morning.
I am still in the transition process. I tell myself to be patient. Yes, sometimes it is discouraging and an awfully slow process. KEEP MOVING. Sometimes it is unstable and you feel unsafe. KEEP MOVING. At times it is better to be safe than sorry; but when it comes to your dreams, taking risks is one of the surest ways you can attain greatness in your field of work, especially in the world of art (what’s safe art anyway?!?!). Being safe in our comfort zone will leave us feeling sorry in the end with questions of “what ifs” and a bunch of “Shoulda,” “Coulda,” “Woulda’s”. So be daring, be you, take the leap, and be free!!!!
So lets continue to support and encourage each other. We are in this together.
With love, motivation, and gratitude,
***Image taken from article Afraid of Change? 10 Steps Towards Overcoming Fear
Here are a few more things I came across recently, that may help you on your journey:
“If you want to conquer fear, don’t sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy.” ~Dale Carnegie
“Decide that you want it more than you are afraid of it.” ~ Bill Cosby
“A lot of people resist transition and therefore never allow themselves to enjoy who they are. Embrace the change, no matter what it is; once you do, you can learn about the new world you’re in and take advantage of it.” ~Nikki Giovanni
“All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy; for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter another.” ~Anatole France
“Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear. “ ~George Addair
“Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.” ~Arthur Ashe