Thursday 23 March 2017

Day 22. The courage solution

Successfully confronting your fears


I am now nine days out from finishing and into the 4th phase of the book where we are focussing on cultivating courage and positive relationships to thrive in mind, body and spirit.
Before i get into today's solution, we were given a little pep talk as we head towards the finish and are asked to consider if we are feeling excited, empowered, scared or unsure of what will happen on Day 31, having committed to having 30 days alcohol free - do we just jump back in, or use the experience as a longer term opportunity? I am actually feeling excited and empowered as each day goes by, and i am feeling less inclined to want to drink again, cause i feel that fantastic.

Next up, we are going to tackle fear....which should be fine for someone who often gets called fearless, but even I have fears and they are related to my own negative belief of not being "enough". Yep, me who feels pretty fearless about most things has felt that i haven't been pretty, smart or enough or liked by others - with the last one being the opportunity killer.

When I read this excerpt from the book below, i was like wow.....i need to keep this close and put it up somewhere and also share it. Apart from the reference to god (i am not religious in anyway) I felt that as much as i shine, it's okay for me to shine even more and really think about the stupid self doubts I have and learn from them and let them go.

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.  Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.  It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.  We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small doesn't serve the world.  There's nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do.  We are born to manifest the glory of God that is within us.  It's not just in some of us, it's in everyone.  And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.  As we are liberated from our fear, our presence automatically liberates others.  

Why is it that we can or should feel lesser than brilliant or feel the need to shrink and not be noticed? I don't want to let my life pass by any longer feeling like I am not good enough for anything or anyone or have to settle for anything less than the best - whether it's coffee, men, friends, life..... I want my brilliance and courage to give others permission to be brilliant and courageous as well and so those irrational fears of mine need to get the fuck out of my way.
This is not the type of brilliance i was looking for when i asked google. wrong wrong wrong...

With our theme of confronting fears we learnt how to let them go so we can thrive with courage. We took a deep dive into fear and how we may feel wondering if we can drink alcohol again and we are reminded that alcohol isn't going anywhere and we knew what life was like with it, so why not see where life takes us without it. imagine the possibilities. We have to tackle the irrational fears - the ones where we imagine all the negative things that may never transpire but hold us back. We have to redefine failure and learn that it is feedback to look at things in another way and we get introduced to the fear compass which shows that fear is giving us an opportunity to grow and the fear compass will point us towards the next step where we can grow and be free.

One of my favourite movies is YES MAN and they use this as a concept in the book.  Jim Carey says yes to everything in the movie and his life opens up.  We are encouraged to stop being stuck in our comfort zone and say yes to as much as possible.  I do actually say yes to a lot of things, but I need to say more yesses to the ones that really make me uncomfortable.  So i am committing to more yes man, or in my case more YES JAN, YES.
There were the 4 big action items today to help stir up some fear.

Action 1. Write your past attempts to stop drinking and why they didn't work.
1. waking and saying no more
2. writing a note and putting it on a wine bottle to remind me of how crap i felt sometimes, after having a big night out
3. having an empty wine bottle and marking it with a tick for each day i didn't have a drink

Guess what, none of those worked, because as much as i didn't want to have a glass of wine most nights, the desire to have a glass of wine was stronger.

Action 2. Write down your drinking fears, how you will overcome them and how you will feel.
I am including one....and you all may think it's silly, but for someone who at times doesn't feel they are enough, the irrational fear is very real.

FEAR - I'd use coming home and having a wine or 2 as an excuse not to go out because it would mean i would have to make small talk with strangers.  Smart enough to know that drinking and driving is a no go zone, and dumb enough to know that by having a couple of vino's meant i didn't have to face some fears.  This wasn't the case all the time, cause i absolutely go out and do stuff, but if i knew i would be out of my comfort zone, then i'd probably avoid it.

BENEFIT OF THIS - meant i didn't need to go out of my comfort zone.

OVERCOMING THIS - I should/will be open to all invitations and opportunities to expand my horizons. I am not going to make new friends and find love by sitting home on the couch.  Use all the brilliant qualities I have to help me fake the ones i feel i don't have.

HOW WILL THIS CHANGE FEEL - I will start to enlarge my circle of friends and experiences and with that may come opportunities that could be beyond my wildest dreams. My world will become bigger not stay the same, or become smaller.

With this share, I feel that others probably have the same stupid fears that I have, so i'm prepared to be brilliant, courageous and honest for all of us.

Action 3. Say Yes.
Don't think i need to elaborate on that one.

Action 4. Recognise, acknowledge and embrace fear
To do this, we have been asked that when in fearful situations, to shift our focus every 15 seconds between the physical sensations we are feeling and the ones we want to feel, to give us courage, confidence and peace. This little old lion (or cougar) whatever, wants to rack up the courage medals big time. after all, i do have the chest to pin them on.
So with only 9 days to go, how did i feel on day 22
I went to bed really really late, and woke super early - much easier when having had no alcohol
I have a really clear head and did heaps of affirmations and in turn did heaps around the house, i was just a doing machine
5.00pm - thought about wine, but don't actually have any interest in drinking any
8.30pm - thought about wine again, but the feeling passed very quickly
Did think about some of my limiting behaviours and how to shift them
And in my enthusiasm of being a sober domestic goddess, i managed to turn a vintage skirt that i have had for nearly 20 years, a rosey shade of pink. FFS....but, i actually think it's much cuter.....
Well, i certainly have a lot to be thinking and doing, and i am willingly taking it all onboard.  I have tackled a lot of fears along the way, and look forward to tackling the ones that are truly holding me back.  All invitations to get me out of my comfort zone will be considered.

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