One thing I’ve learned this year so far (about fear)

Person high up on building, facing fear

Things you thought were really scary aren’t so scary once you’ve done them…

I thought that writing a blog post and putting it out there would be really scary. I thought that tweeting said blogpost would be even scarier.

I’m not a massive social media person.

The only tweets I’d previously sent had been for my work Twitter account, and they were few. But I realised that if I want to reach people, and if I want to help someone by writing something that might resonate with them, I have to get the writing out there into the world. Twitter seemed like a good way of doing that.

Once I’d written my first blogspost – I was pretty proud. I felt as though someone reading it might feel inspired. So that helped, I actually wanted to get it out there.

I spent a while looking at how people I admired structured their tweets when they were publishing blogposts, wrote several draft versions of my own tweet until I was happy, and pressed ‘Tweet’.

That was it. Easy. Done. Out there.

I soon realised that the scariest thing about sending out a tweet, especially one where you want people to click a link and read on, is the possibility that no one will see it, or take any notice. You’ve spent time rewriting and editing, finding a decent image for your post, drafting a tweet which will be captivating…and then you look at the stats and realise the tweet has passed the eyes of very few people. No one has clicked the link.


So the fear of tweeting disappears. The fear of putting your work out there disappears. The fear of not being seen appears. Isn’t that interesting? How one big fear can disappear just like that, as soon as you do the scary thing?

And then the next big fear appears?

What’s the big scary thing you’re going to do today? Only to realise it’s not that scary after all?

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Photo by Yeshi Kangrang on Unsplash

Silver lining

Golden circles pattern

I’ve realised that every time a relationship has ended, I’ve been able to turn it around into a positive situation and somehow improve my life.

With a break-up, of course I always have moments of wretchedness. Everything is terrible, suddenly it seems to shine a light on everything that’s wrong with my life, my social life, my home, my job, my fitness, my looks, have I travelled enough, am I doing everything I want to do with my life? This always seems to happen. In terms of romantic relationships – is it ever going to happen, why does it always go wrong? These same questions – always.

But, after a while, this is always followed by a feeling of lifting. Suddenly I have a massive desire to do something to improve my life. Almost as an act of rebellion, this has happened, everything feels like crap, but I’m now going to make my life even better.

And this seems to happen consistently. I had an ex who had told me that he’d learned Spanish for free at a local community college. I was jealous. When the relationship ended I thought, “I’m going to learn Spanish, if he can, so can I!” And I did. I did a GCSE in Spanish and now here I am living in Spain speaking Spanish every day. He inspired me.

I’ve taken trips, I’ve moved house, I’ve started courses, all inspired by stopping and re-evaluating where I am in my life.

I reflect on different areas of my life, look at things slightly differently, and consider what I need to work on. And I feel inspired to make some changes.

It’s interesting how the end of a relationship can seem like the worst thing in the world, but actually it can shift you forward in other ways.

It was the same when I had my career ‘breakdown’ moment. It felt like the worst thing in the world – I was really stressed, I didn’t know what to do; but it ended up being the best possible thing for me. Because I got out of a career I wasn’t enjoying and hadn’t been for years, it forced me to really think about what kind of life I wanted, what kind of lifestyle.

Did I want the London lifestyle I had, which I found stressful, and busy, and expensive, or did I want to lead a simpler, more flexible life, doing work I valued more. I realised I wanted to be able to work where I want. I eventually made the decision to live in another country, something I’d held back on for a long time.

So this breakdown gave me a chance to re-evaluate everything. I had the freedom to make some decisions. And once I’d made the decision to quit my job, which felt huge at the time, it made making further brave decisions that much easier to do. I know I can focus on what I want, and do it.

When something bad happens, it’s not always quite so bad. It can be a silver lining, and can set you off on a path which is way better than you’ve even imagined. Something better could be round the corner.

Get in touch with me here if you’re ready to improve your life and you’d like me to help you with getting unstuck, or with a career transition.

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Photo by Daniel Páscoa on Unsplash