Do It Scared

Earlier this year my wife Andrea and I had a friend over who was sharing the details of a job opportunity all the way across the country.  She was nervous and scared about the change and about all of the unknowns.  She had done several interviews via phone and Skype, but had never even been to this city where she was now considering moving.

As we talked, it became increasingly clear (to us) that this job was a REALLY good fit for our friend and we asked what was holding her back.  We discovered that among other smaller things, fear was the big one.

So I shared with her this story I heard on another podcast.  I honestly cannot remember which show or episode I heard it on to attribute it, but either way it stuck with me.

There was a fire in a high-rise building in a city.  The firemen responded and used the ladder truck to reach the floor where people were trapped.  The men successfully evacuated everyone but one woman who refused to climb out the window and down the ladder.  The fireman tried EVERYTHING to convince and coerce her to go, pleading with her for her own safety, but she continued to refuse.  The stairs were blocked by the fire, and time was running out for them to make a successful exit, so finally the fireman responded with a simple, “why not?” to which the woman replied, “Because I’m too scared.”

What the fireman said next was so profound and simple - “Ok. Then do it scared.”

Did you catch that?  DO IT SCARED.

These 3 words have made a HUGE difference to me lately in both my business and personal life.  I particularly have enjoyed using this phrase with my kids.  Sometimes their fears seam so irrational to me as an adult, but they are legitimately scared of something.  And being able to encourage them to do something scared, to push through because the realization on the other side is transformational - I CAN DO IT.  You can do it!  It’s not easy.  As a mentor friend of mine often reminds me, “if it was easy, everyone would do it.”  So whatever it is that has you paused or paralyzed in fear, you don’t have to be fearless or wait until you’re not afraid to move forward.  DO IT SCARED.  Just take the next step.

Remember this, that although fear is real, it can only control us to the extent we allow it.  You’ve probably heard this hundreds of times like i have, but it bears repeating - you’ve got to push through the fear because nothing extraordinary happens inside of your comfort zone.  It’s only when we take that leap of faith even when we’re scared that we truly experience some of life’s most amazing blessings.  So you don’t have to be fearless, but you must take action - so just do it scared!  

What is YOUR greatest fear?  What is holding you back from taking that next step?