Wednesday, September 29, 2010

being brave




Recently I returned from being on the road for almost two weeks. I rented a uhaul trailer and left New Jersey to make my way to Minneapolis where i was to sell at The Creative Connection. I stopped at stay with friends along the way to break up the driving.

As i pulled out the driveway with the trailer attached to my car, I was a little nervous. Sure, I've driven across the United States twice alone (and once with a 14month old baby!), but I'd never pulled a trailer before. Things that I use to do without a thought as a younger girl, now as i am older, i spend more time thinking about what i am doing and wondering, "can i do this"? i'm not sure why or when we start to question ourselves now that we are older. is it because society confines us to certain rules and we get caught up thinking that we can't wear something because magazines say that "at this age, you should be dressing like this"? or is it because other people look at you and say "wow, you are crazy, i'd never do that" "or how can you stand to be alone for that long". (btw, the alone time - i LOVED it!) I do believe that society does put alot of pressure on us to behave in a certain way.




We were going to do some practicing with the trailer before we left (as being a Virgo and ex GirlScout, I like to be organized and prepared!), but there was no time. My husband tried to give me some pointers, but i was to busy trying to get on the road to actually process them. I was nervous for a few miles as I got use to the trailer and remember some of the things that he had told me. I started to think about what was making me so nervous and the more i drove, the better I felt. I like to sing a little mantra do myself when i am doing the self doubting thing. It's from "Finding Nemo" when Doree says to Marlin "just keep swimming, just keep swimming" (try it, it works!)

i think one of the reasons i was nervous was because pulling a trailer was a first for me. however as i began to drive, it occurred to me that the other drivers did not know that i was nervous and to them, i probably look like i knew what i was doing - so i started practicing what i like to refer to as "perceived confidence". Growing up in the military (Navy brat, thank you very much), there were many, many times were i was the new kid. that kid walking into the classroom where everyone knows each other am they are all staring at me. So even at an early age, i would walk in those situations with my head held high and "act" confident. they didn't know i was nervous and i certainly wasn't going to tell them. At the show, I worked hard to introduce myself (not my favorite thing to do), to talk the talk and walk the walk). i grabbed "power women" and promoted myself and my work. Not an easy thing to do, that "promoting yourself". it takes confidence and the ability to tell yourself, "i have nothing to lose". even if none of it ever pans out, I gave it my best shot.



the same can be applied to getting started as an artist, starting to sell your art, becoming a teacher and more. The more confident you appear to others, the easier it gets (in my opinion). I think it's more flattering as a person to exude confidence then to ooze self doubt. sure it's a lot of hard work. i've worked my butt off over the last 4 years, but my confidence and fearless attitude is starting to pay off. As I left a new friend on the last leg of my journey to come home, she said to me "you are so talented and fearless. I find it inspiring". As i hugged her goodbye, I left with a smile on face. That's what i want to hear - I want others to know that you can do it if you try.




It's easier than you think.


p.s.
i totally forgot to mention one harrowing parking incident. I could see quickly that it was not a situation I or my friends could get out of, so I immediately took charge (as it was a young, not-so-smart parking attendant who got us in a pickle). Another part of being brave is also knowing when to throw in the towel and demand help immediately!

18 comments:

  1. This is brilliant and incredibly inspiring. I've been struggling a lot the last few months and this is exactly what I needed to get back to it.

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  2. You are my hero(ine). :-) I know all about that fear you described and now into my later years still deal with it but I have gotten better and try not to let others see that fear, in order to bolster myself in dealing with whatever comes my way. I think a lot of people who know me would be surprised at the fear beneath. But that travelling thing, alone, pulling a trailer, I stand and saLUTE you girl!
    xo
    Gail

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  3. Lovely post Kecia. There are several times in my life that warranted a trailer. If I could be sure I didn't have to back up anywhere and it was it the country I braved it. Otherwise I rely on my husband and now grown sons. I liked what you wrote on promoting yourself, definately not my strong point. I also feel I have to try balancing being authentic with myself and who I think I want to be :)

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  4. This post hit home! Thank you so much for these inspiring words. I used to drive everyplace and all of a freaking sudden I panic sometimes. But I still go and just talk to myself. So again thank you for posting this. Grace xoxoxo

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  5. that's a real good point, Kim - being authentic. i know when i first started setting up my booth and seeing some of those other very elaborate booths, i looked at my pile of "junk" and felt a little ghetto! but then i stopped and told myself; this is me, this is how i operate and it is a look i am known for. my booth always turns out well - but it's very easy to go down that road of "wow, look at how amazing their set up is and mine doesn't compare" - but it's because they have the $ to put into it and i have to design according to my budget. but you know what? that works for me even if i have to remind myself!

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  6. Oh Geoff in MN we love you!

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  7. darlin' you are a MARVEL! kudos to you for gleaning the lessons laid out to you on your journey! i may just have to quote you, for your brilliance struck a particular chord w/ me, today :-) "I think it's more flattering as a person to exude confidence then to ooze self doubt."
    BRAVA!
    - penny

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  8. Fantastic post - I could really relate to what you were saying! Good for you for stomping down that little inner voice!!!!

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  9. Enjoyed this post - I can so relate. I use to do a lot of things and drive places, that I don't do now.

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  10. Kecia!! OMG!!! What an inspiring post!! EVERYONE should read this!!! I am still trying to work through my panic attacks and daily fears!! But reading this gives me an overwhelming feeling!!.. I have followed your posts and have admired your fearlesness!! And now to hear you shared similar fears and overcame them !! I know I am not alone!! There is hope for me yet!! THANK YOU for this post!!!

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  11. Yes, cheers to Geoff, the good Samaritan who helped us out of parking pickle!

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  12. I'm so glad you got your gumption-on--it was wonderful to have you stay with us--we all enjoyed you truly. Back in the day when I was young and trying to be brave after my husband passed away and left me with 4 kids at age 30, I packed up my Jeep and the two baby boys and drove from NY to Taos just to prove to myself that I could STILL do anything (I thought I was middle-aged at 30!--ha!) It's a super-important thing to do to show yourself that you still have it and still want to do it. xxoo You're in my hero book <3

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  13. Great post and so inspirational. Just like you! I'm so happy for you, that you had a good time and were able to mix business with pleasure.

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  14. Kecia,
    Many years ago when my dad passed away, there can a time when my mom and I had to attach a flatbed trailer to her truck so we could haul stuff to the dump. At first, she was in tears 'cause this reminded her my dad was gone. But as we worked together and managed to attach the trailer AND haul it to the dump, I saw my mom's mood change to one of pride of accomplishment!! We had the best time together knowing we were "strong-women" and could do what needed to be done. "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me"-that is my mandra!

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  15. Hi Kecia!...Welcome back Home!...this is such an inspiring post!LOVE it,and very much needed it,...it's that time of year when I know myself,start the self-doubting ritual,...my MOM always said,"there will always be someone that has more than you,and someone that has less than you,the trick is to WANT what you already have!"...Love that you are staying true to You,and your path!....thanks for sharing and your encouraging words!...:)virginia

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  16. Congrats on your bravery!!! Great story by the way.

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  17. Kecia my friend your artistic skill, perseverance and amazing attitude is exceptionally admirable. Keep up the hard work you are a shinning star!

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  18. Thanks for your great information, the contents are quiet interesting.I will be waiting for your next post....


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