On Finding The Courage To Lean In

For a long time I completely ignored my desire to write. It lay dormant, buried deep down in my heart where it was safe. It felt too outlandish to acknowledge it. I knew that once I gave it merit, I would then have to make a choice as to whether or not I was actually going to do anything about it. I suppose ignorance really is bliss sometimes, but that only works for so long.

Slowly and surely I’ve felt God drawing this desire up to the surface of my heart until I can no longer ignore it. It’s been uncomfortable, like a needle pulling a thread up and through, piercing my heart as he weaves it more and more into the fabric of who I am. It’s uncomfortable because each tug of the needle is pulling me in a direction that leads right out of my comfort zone.

When I signed on to take this challenge to write for 31 days straight, it scared me to death because it wasn’t just outside of my comfort zone, it was a million miles away from it. I knew it would be hard. I knew I might falter. But I also knew that I couldn’t keep playing it safe and expect to experience any growth. I knew I needed to get comfortable with being uncomfortable if I was going to do this writing thing at all. I needed to lean in.

Tomorrow is the last day of October and this challenge, and while it has been intense, I know without a doubt, that pressure has brought about growth.

Every single day for an entire month I did the thing that scared me. I got my BIC (butt in chair) and my HOK (hands on keyboard) and I put words on the page. I made new connections with readers and other writers. I learned consistency and brevity. I learned that when I feel like I don’t have anything to write, that’s not actually true.

I never wrote a throw-away post just to stay in the game. I showed up everyday and I wrote from my gut. I did it over and over again until it became a normal part of my routine…Until it didn’t scare me anymore.

I mentioned before that in more ways than one this entire month has been an exercise in discipline. In addition to writing, I set a fitness goal and I’ve been following a specific food plan and workout regime to get there. It’s no joke. Between working out and writing I’ve set aside between 4-5 hours each day to work towards my goals. I lost 6 more pounds this month. I put on muscle. I put words on the page and I hit publish every day. I didn’t quit anything, even thought there were plenty of times that I wanted to.

I leaned in to the difficult thing and I did not fall.

I say all of this not to toot my own horn or make it sound like I’m ruling at life- because let’s be real here- this month nearly killed me dead.

I say all of this because 30 days ago my fear of failing felt like a vicious beast with it’s finger on my pulse and a chokehold on my neck. But fear it turns out, is far worse when it’s imagined.

By taking on some of my fears I realized that they are mostly in vain.

I realized that I can do hard things. I just need to get out of my own head and start doing them.


image* This is Day 30 of a 31 Day series on Keeping It Real. You can find all of the posts in this series here I hope you follow along and join the conversation! *

6 thoughts on “On Finding The Courage To Lean In

    1. ambersalhus@msn.com

      Barbie, thank you for all your kindness and help and encouragement- without it I may never have even gotten started!

  1. Adrienne

    Nice work, Amber! Your BIC and HOK have inspired me throughout the month…to keep at it, and as a reminder we are just getting rolling. Thanks for the example and cheers!

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