“A man who says he has never been scared is either lying or else he’s never been any place or done anything.” – Louis L’Amour
Think of a time in your life when you were just about to take a big leap forward by doing something you had never done before. What did that feel like? Perhaps you felt anxious. Perhaps your heart was racing, palms sweating. Perhaps you had shallow breaths and were nervous and shaking. Perhaps you wished you were any other place than where you were at that moment. Perhaps, imagining this time in your life, you’re feeling it all again at this moment.
This is what is called the GULP!
A GULP occurs when you are stepping out of a comfort zone that is no longer serving you into an area that you are not familiar with. If you knew how to do it, it wouldn’t provide you with the GULP! If you knew how to do it, it wouldn’t provide you with that feeling of ‘scary exhilaration’. If you knew how to do it, it wouldn’t provide you with the juiciness of leaving a comfort zone and experiencing something new and exciting.
“We fear the thing we want the most.” – Dr. Robert Anthony
What helps us all “Feel the GULP and do it anyway” is to remember what it is we hunger for…what we must make real in our lives. When you feel that GULP, it is the time to connect with what you hunger to make real and your compelling purpose that drives you forward. This connecting with your hunger and compelling purpose is what will pull you (not push you) through the GULP. This is what will help you move on to the next GULP. Then, GULP by GULP, you can have your vision become a reality.
There is an acronym for fear that I’ve heard several times: False Evidence Appearing Real. When you think about taking a leap forward and you feel that anxiety coming on, think about what story you are telling yourself regarding the situation. Think about what is false about what you are telling yourself. It’s your story. You made it up and you can make up a different one.
Here are a few ways to help you move through the GULP:
- Remember these doubts are a good thing. They mean you are stepping out of your comfort zones and growing.
- Take action. Take one small step. You’ll feel so much better coming out on the other side and it will be easier next time.
- Find an ally who you can commit to or who has been through the same or a similar situation. You don’t have to do this alone.
- Ask yourself where else could you get the same ‘scary exhilaration’ feeling of being on a roller coaster (The Manhattan at Las Vegas is a great one!) without paying amusement park prices?
“Many of our fears are tissue paper thin, and a single courageous step would carry us clear through them.” – Brendan Francis