Monthly Archives: May 2015

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Stand Up For Yourself

As a child, I was fairly insecure, with my buck teeth, frizzy hair, and hand-me-down shoes. Fortunate enough to naturally excel in school and sports, however, I managed to survive grade school and high school without getting too terribly made fun of or pressured into any real trouble-making, falling somewhere below the “cool kids” yet above the kids who got bullied. In my own family, I learned many great lessons such as how to share (when you’re the eighth of nine kids, you don’t really have a choice), how to be grateful for what you have, and how to entertain yourself (when bored during my family’s DAILY church service trip to attend Mass before school). I never really picked up the ability to stand up for myself, however, and I vividly remember the day I was a teenager, driving a bit faster than I should’ve been on a side street when I got yelled at by a cyclist who happened to be on that same, random, narrow road. “You’re going too fast!” He yelled at me, angrily. “I’m s-sorry,” I stuttered through my rolled-down window, feeling embarrassed, knowing I was out of line for letting my thrill for speed take over. And then the guy sneered, “I bet your daddy […]

Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway

After growing up a highly religious environment that was loving, yet also placed a lot of emphasis on fear (e.g. fear of God), I decided that as an adult, I don’t want fear to run my life. I’m certainly still afraid of things, but I try not to let that fear stop me, (as long as I’m still living by my principles). In fact, I even seek out things that scare me now. One of my favorite books is entitled “Fear the Fear and Do It Anyway.” For instance, after never having learned to swim as a child, I signed up for a triathlon after college that had a half-mile open water swim. I went to a pool a few times, got a couple tips from a friend, and showed up on race day, so scared I could barely speak. Oh, that water looked choppy. The gun went off and I was the last one in the water. Stroke by crooked stroke, I made it the full half-mile and sprinted with glee the second I hit land. I’ve moved across the country by myself, I’ve started my own business, and I’ve let myself fall helplessly in love – all scary things that were well worth the risk, and my life […]