You don’t have to be fearless to be brave. Choosing to begin while afraid makes it possible to grasp new channels of creativity!
Courage is the complement of fear.Robert A. Heinlein
A man who is fearless cannot be courageous.
He is also a fool.
When We’re Told to “Be Fearless”
I wonder how many times a day we are told (either directly or indirectly) to “be fearless.” 5? 10? 100? More?
Last night, I was shown an ad for Martha Stewart’s “Think Like a Mogul” Masterclass. Right out of the gate, she tells us the secret to her success and ours (if we accept her challenge): “Be fearless.”
Earlier this week, I came across a clip of John Mayer dishing in an interview with Zane Lowe about his work and how to turn on one’s creativity. Zane asked John what his process was for generating ideas for his music.
“Well, I don’t always do it,” he admitted, “because it requires a stupid bravery all the time.”
John began strumming on his guitar. A few chords in, he started to improvise lyrics to pair with the melody, riffing as the words fell from his brain and out of his mouth like gumballs. He paused and said, “If you’re not Ouija boarding immediately, you’re wasting time.”
What John meant was when in the creative thrash, if we don’t immediately launch headlong into The Unknown, commit to risk, and boldly begin trying things, we are traveling in circles.
I cheered, “YES!”
A bit later he said, “…You gotta keep forcing it, forcing it, forcing it….If you can get fearless, fearless, fearless, fearless…it’s hard to do.”
While I love most of what he said, I’m not sure about the advice to “be fearless.” I have a bit of a different take on the relationship we have to our fear and how to cross The Threshold to courageous creating.
A seemingly small distinction that I believe makes all the difference in the world.
Don’t Be Fearless; Embrace Fear
I don’t know about you, but I am scared a lot of the time—especially when I am creating something.
When we are told to simply, “be fearless,” our brains are going to rear up like a cranky stallion. We will immediately think there is no way we cannot be without fear. We’ll feel defeated before we even make the tiniest moves in any direction that requires courage.
We’ll let Resistance win. We’ll stay stuck, on the sidelines, thinking the game is for others and not for us.
How about we stay in our fear, fully embrace it, and ride it instead?
Let me explain.
Imagine you are at a threshold to a portal. On one side is you, your desire to create something, and your throbbing Fear. (Fear sits right with us when we aren’t in motion, not creating.)
What if we were to nod to our Fear, acknowledge it, and let it be? Not try to Hoover it out, thump our chests, and declare ourselves fearless?
Just let it be, and begin anyway.
When we begin while in fear, doing so unleashes the frequencies of synchronicity and creative firing. The first moves behind us, fear eases its grip. That is, by partnering with our fear and letting it hang out with us while we make our first efforts, we find our courage.
Hanging out with our Fear and taking creative leaps while steeped in it requires some practice. Each time we approach The Threshold and travel across it into the portal of making something, we build the musculature for courage.
The more we saddle up, the more courageous muscle fibers we fashion.
Learn to Ride the Waves of Fear
Would you like to learn how to champion your courage?
Beginning on January 15th, I will be teaching The Sketchbook Entrepreneur Masterclass. Not just for entrepreneurs, this 6-week class (taught live via Zoom) is an adventure of the spirit. All classes are recorded, and I send out the Replay immediately. I have purposely kept the time commitment to a very doable level no matter how busy your schedule may be.
With no previous art experience required, this Masterclass is your ticket to learning how to ride the waves of Fear right into the portal of your best work and living.
As soon as the very first class, you will start to inhabit your body differently. You will feel the old limits, the old excuses, the old painful beliefs crack away and turn to dust.
You will begin making different choices. You will walk in the world in a new way. And, yes, Magic appears on the regular as a result.
If you would like to experience more ease, flow, and success in your life, join us. I can teach you how to surface your innate courage and enjoy the alchemy of creating anything you want.
We don’t have to try to get rid of our fear before we begin.
We can take all our fears, itchy Perfectionism, and worries over how we will stack up, and transmute the entire lot into our most lucrative, fulfilling, and impactful work.