My 8 year-old daughter Jenna never met a sport she couldn’t master – until last week. Whether it’s soccer, baseball, basketball or skateboarding, Jenna typically does well right away. Yesterday was a very different story.
We were in Park City, Utah on a family ski vacation and this was Jenna’s first time on a snowboard. We felt she should take a lesson to learn the basics, however she assured us that by the end of the day, she would be joining us in a family ski. At 3pm, when I went to pick her up from the lesson, she was laying flat on the ground in the snow with a very unhappy look on her face. When she saw me she began to cry and stated firmly, “I quit. I mean everything. I’m quitting all my sports. I don’t like snowboarding and I don’t like sports.” I sat down in the snow beside her and decided it was best to say nothing at that moment. We sat there in silence for a few minutes and then with a sigh, she said, “I can’t quit. Our family doesn’t quit.” My reply? “That’s right.”
I was reminded (once again) how powerful the emotion of fear and failure can be. Whether you are an 8 year-old or a 50 year-old, the emotion can rear it’s ugly head and take control over your confidence, self-esteem and decision making. Fear and fear of failure can spill over into every aspect of your life without you even realizing it’s happening. Not only did Jenna feel a sense of failure from the current day’s activity but it began to weave it’s way into areas of her life where she felt completely secure.
I’ve experienced this in my own life. Something will happen to deflate my self-confidence. When this occurs, doubt begins to creep in and weave it’s way into my stream of consciousness. I start questioning myself and many of my decisions. From writing, public speaking or launching a new program, there have been times when I wanted to quit.
Has this ever happened to you?
All of a sudden something doesn’t go as you’d planned and then you begin to wonder if anything in your life or business is right. If so, don’t fret. It happens to all of us at one point or another. Here’s the silver lining: If this has happened to you, it means you are getting out of your comfort zone. You’re taking risks and trying something new. The key is when things don’t go exactly as you had planned or envisioned, you must try again. My husband Greg and I have a belief that our children don’t have to keep doing activities they no longer enjoy, however we don’t want them to allow fear to be the reason they quit. We both understand how powerful this emotion can be and how important it is to work through it if we are to succeed.
If you know that fear is weaving it’s way into your decision making and you're having fleeting thoughts on giving up, here are a few smart solutions that will help you move through the fear and get you on the road to accomplishing your Big Ideas, Dreams and Goals:
1. Keep a Rave Reviews File – I have a file in my right desk drawer that holds all of the rave reviews and thank you cards I’ve ever received from the women I’ve worked with over the years. Any time I’m feeling like fear is present and I’m ready to throw in the towel, I pull out that file and begin to read the 100’s of complimentary notes that have been written about how I’ve supported and helped women on their journey.
2. Practice Gratitude – When you wake up each day and go to bed each night, think of at least 3 things you are grateful for. Research shows that expressing gratitude promotes happiness. If you feel happy and abundant, you’ll greet each day with a new inspiration to keep moving toward your goals.
3. Grab Some Downtime – Sometimes the best thing to do is get away from the situation. Get together with friends or family who make you laugh, watch a funny movie or do something that makes you feel happy and light at heart.
That afternoon, my logical brain wanted to sit and have a discussion with Jenna about why quitting is never the answer but I knew that would get us nowhere (with the exception of more tears). I immediately offered hot chocolate with plenty of whipped cream and away we went to warm up and dry her tears. The next day, Jenna happily went to her snowboard lesson and by day’s end she was barreling down the mountain. I could barely keep up…
Smart Women Never Quit.
Anything is possible. Everything is waiting for you.
© 2011 Joy Chudacoff
WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR E-ZINE OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this complete blurb with it: Joy Chudacoff, ICF, PCC, is the founder of Smart Women Smart Solutions®, a Professional Certified Coach to 1000’s of women, Motivational Speaker, and Entrepreneur. She publishes a weekly buzz generating ezine, Reflections On Life and Business for Women Entrepreneurs. If you’re ready take your coaching business to the next level, get your FREE Tips, FREE Report, FREE MP3 and be the first to hear about my exciting new program for coaches and consultants at Smart Women Smart Solutions Coaching.