Are You Scared To Be Seen?
Have you ever been so scared about something you have cried?
This was me recently.I know that many of my readers suffer from anxiety and depression and I imagine many of you experience social anxiety too. Some of you may have a fear of public speaking and some may have a deeper fear called a phobia.
But what if your fear is of being ‘seen and heard’?
This was my fear and is one I am slowly unraveling and moving through.
Facing a fear is a really tough thing. Change is never easy because if it were many people would be living completely different lives.
In a recent blog, I shared my first experience of public speaking via a radio interview. This took so much courage to do. My hand was shaking as I held the telephone waiting for my turn to speak, but I was fortunately blessed with kindness and an understanding interviewer, but I knew that was just the beginning.
On the weekend of 18th/19th of February, I took another leap into the fire of my phobia and attended a workshop called ‘Be Seen, Be Heard’ in my local area led by an actor and teacher called ‘Adam Fotheringham‘. This was a big turning point for me because I hadn’t realised that taking this courageous step would open me up to new possibilities and creativity.
It’s amazing how much energy it takes to hold ourselves still, not moving and trapped in a comfort zone. I know everything unfolds in perfect timing for us all and this includes periods of frustration and feeling stuck too, but when the time arrives to take that leap the Universe/Life/God (whatever label you wish to give to life-force energy) gives us the inner nudge where we have no choice but to take that step forward into the hugely unknown and uncertainty of our new life.
Adam took us through exercises, both speaking and activities that I had absolutely hated at school. I was glad I was challenged though because he helped me face up to what was going on for me back in my school days. I wanted so much to feel free to ‘play the fool’, to let my hair down and not ‘be perfect’, but I had already gotten so locked into a trauma cycle from the age of 7 that I was clueless about how to drop the perfectionist need to be right, to be perfect.
Instead, Adam challenged that little girl who felt embarrassed to be alive, who felt ashamed of wearing anything but ‘perfection’.
As he led us through games involving throwing sticks, balls and saying tongue-twisters to each other in the group and I felt so embarrassed. Most of the group were laughing and felt at complete ease, but I felt rigid with fear. This was a hard experience, but because of Adam’s willingness to let us air our fears, by day 2 I felt much more relaxed and at ease f*&%king up big time.
Failure on an epic scale was to be embraced. Not just inwardly, but publicly. We were shown how to enjoy failing and making a fool of ourselves.
This brought up tears, intense fear, shaking knees, dry throat, lots of pain for me, but as I spoke about this in front of a row of faces looking at me with kindness I released my shawl of protection and my vulnerable self became even more of a super power. Vulnerability is my super power now and it took taking that step into immense fear and courage.
What is holding you back in your life?
What scares you so much, but you feel if you could just step into it your world would open and the doors that were closed would begin to fill your life with possibility?