The following is a story from one of my favorite books by Diane Conway called “What Would You Do If You Had No Fear? Living Your Dreams While Quakin’ In Your Boots.” The title alone grabbed my attention, but the picture of a woman (I believe it is the author) gleefully jumping out of plane and doing a split in the air made me pick it up. Not that I’m going to jump out of a plane any time soon, and if I did the split would be unintentional, but I realized that this woman was overcoming fear and loving it, and I wanted to do the same.
If you want a boost of energy, a lot of humor, and tremendously inspiring stories, read this book. One of the chapters shared a story that seemed especially poignant based upon my series on No Fear, so I want to share it with you. The chapter is titled “Permission Slips.”
Brad said, “I have a good voice and I love to sing. For my whole life, forty years of it, every time I thought of something bold I wanted to do, immediately a voice in the back of my head would start, ‘You can’t do that, you’ll look stupid, you’ll embarrass yourself, forget it!” Like a reverse abracadabra, the desire would be wiped away, stuffed down, and stomped. The voice might as well have been on a PA system like the old air raid signals squawking a warning: ‘Duck and cover, he’s dreaming again!”
One day Brad finally had the nerve to declare his independence from fear long enough to call the San Francisco Opera for an audition. Today he sings in the chorus. In one moment Brad gave himself permission to take a risk, and the desire spoke louder than the fear. We don’t have to wait for fear to vanish altogether because that moment will never come; all we need is a moment of daring that can change a whole lifetime of waiting.
Write yourself a permission slip.
Give yourself authorization to succeed beyond your wildest dreams.
Look for moments of inspiration and act then.
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