Truth be told, I’ve always wanted to be on T.V.. I had even been working towards that goal for 22 years…but when I got even remotely close, I panicked and retreated. What if I suck at reporting? What if I embarrass myself? What if I look like a freak?
I can’t stand it when I’m just bad at something. Even the words “constructive criticism” make me cringe. That’s probably because I have this nasty habit of becoming discouraged when I’m not innately good at something — which is a total disadvantage since I can only think of a couple things I’ve ever really picked up quickly. And it’s that fear of failure that has stifled some potentially big opportunities for me in the past.
Just one of my dad’s countless admirable qualities was that he was never afraid to let his freak flag fly. He always did what interested him and he wouldn’t worry about looking bizzare in the process — and sometimes he was a pretty bizarre! My dad was just so willing to put himself out there to do what he loved — maybe it’s because he was so good at it — or maybe it’s because he wasn’t afraid to fail.
So, starting today I will no longer let my fear of failure hold me back. I will no longer be afraid of feeling awkward, looking like a total freak or being downright bad at something. I will find fulfillment in doing things because I want to — not because I’m good at them. After all, if we’re not learning, exploring and bettering ourselves in this life, all we’re really doing is killing time.
I hope you’ll join me in doing the things we’ve always wanted to do, but until now, have been too afraid to actually do. Maybe you’ve been wanting to get into shape but the very thought of the gym makes you a nervous wreck (I’ve been there). Maybe you’ve thought about starting a blog but you’re worried nobody will read it (been there too). Or maybe you’ve avoided dancing in public because you’re afraid of looking completely awkward (I’m there now). Well truthfully, you probably will be a little goofy your first few times at the gym. And maybe you’ll only have one person who reads your blog (and maybe it’s your mom). There’s even a really good chance that you’ll feel (and look) incredibly foolish while you’re dancing in public. So what? Be foolish. At the end of this life, I can promise that you’ll never say “I wish I hadn’t danced.”
And no, I’m not telling you to “dance like nobody is watching, ” I’m telling you to dance like everybody is watching — because there are probably going to be plenty of people watching you dance…wishing they had the courage to dance too.
So go play pool if you want to. Start a band if you want to. Wear a cowboy hat and pink tutu if you want to. Dye your hair and change your name to Sunshine if you want to. Try yoga, painting or paddle boarding. Learn a new language, pick up an instrument or join a team. Go back to school, start your own business and chase your dreams — even if your dreams make you look like a total freak. Go ahead, let your freak flag fly!
And one day I hope you’ll tune into my first live T.V. report. I will absolutely try my best — and if I come off as a little bizarre…well, that’ll be okay too.
“If you’re going to be weird, be confident about it.”