Thought this provocative title would catch your attention, and if you’re here reading this, then it worked! It was also the best way I could describe this challenge.
The challenge, should you choose to accept, is to say “Fuck It” and do something you would not normally do because you are afraid. Do this once (or more) a day for seven days straight. Write down each “Fuck it” moment and how you felt about it before you did it (why it scared you) and how you felt after.
The goal is to get over your fears by starting with those small day-to-day fears that we don’t realize build up over time. Anything from asking that “dumb” question, speaking out about something, taking that yoga picture in a crowded place, or saying no to plans without explaining yourself. All of these small habits contribute to the bigger, more obvious onesthat are probably stifling our progress.
The idea for this challenge came about after watching a Ted Talk on “Fear Setting”. Where the speaker mentioned that it is just as beneficial as goal setting because it challenges you to think through and write down the “what if” scenarios of doing something you’re afraid of. With that list in front of you, you can begin to objectively ask yourself (and also write this part down) what is the worse case scenario? And then separate what you can control in those scenarios from what you cannot. You can find the full video and exercise here (scroll down to the Q&A section if you want to skip the story). This exercise made me realize very quickly that most fears (if not all) are in my mind. And unless there is some real danger or harm that may result from my actions, then I really shouldn’t be afraid.
So I reflected on this and realized I have a ton of little fears that are dictating some of my daily habits. And, I believe, once I begin to train my mind to overcome a fear of any kind, this new mindset will expand making it easier to overcome bigger obstacles, which is really all just a matter of perception anyway. 😉
“Once you become fearless, life becomes limitless.” ~ unknown
Now, do not get it twisted, this is very different from “treat yo self”. I’m not challenging you to say “fuck it” and buy that expensive designer bag or eat that whole cake. I’m talking about shifting small day-to-day thoughts and behavior that are motivated by fear.
Now, I realize that in the next seven days you may not have access to a plane you can jump out of, or you enjoy your job and don’t want to quit. So here are my examples so far to get things rolling:
At my office, I have to walk past a large, glass conference room to access the breakroom and restroom. This week, that conference room has been filled to capacity with all day meetings. So each time I made a trip to the restroom, everyone in the room looked over to see who is walking by. Today, I wore a bright red blazer; you can spot me from a mile away. As I made my way to the restroom, I realized I forgot to bring my tea mug. This meant I would have to go back to my desk, grab my mug and come back this direction past the room filled with people. After grabbing my mug and walking back, I realized I forgot to put my lunch in the fridge (I know, new mom brain). So I would have to walk by a THIRD time in a row. What will everyone think? That I don’t do any work around here? That I just roam these halls in my bright red jacket? Then I stopped myself and thought, fuck it, and did what I had to do.
Another example was that I have wanted to ask my boss if I can start working from home a couple times a week. I have been so scared to ask him because he is not a fan of me working from home. I asked myself what is the worse that can happen? He’ll say no? Fine! I’m not gonna die. So I said “fuck it” and I asked him. And, guess what? He agreed!
A third example is admitting on here that this nonsense goes through my head in the first place. HAHA!
Ok, so yes, these may appear small compared to buying that one-way ticket or paragliding in Rio and of course, you can and you should go for those as well! But this is how you begin to shift your thoughts to change behavior and bad habits. I give way too many fucks sometimes, I’m trying to get to zero…so…fuck it!
If you try this, share your examples below. Don’t be shy! Let that be one of your “fuck it!” moments, it’s quite liberating. You can read about one of the fears I conquered during a yoga retreat here for some more inspo. 🙂