That awkward feeling…

Ignite Life
February 8, 2015

shutterstock_238362466In the led up to my workshop on running workshops I have been reflecting upon what it was like when I first started out. I will never forget that feeling of when I first stood up in front of a group to facilitate. I had to demo something on a whiteboard – I very quickly found out that this can be quite an art, something happens to your brain and its ability to spell (or draw) goes out the window pretty damn fast. I clunkily got through the diagram and turned around to face the group and completely froze. The little voice in my head was yelling, really loudly ‘holy crap, I don’t like public speaking, shit here I am looking like a complete idiot, unable to move, they are just staring at me, say something intelligent, oh that’s right you don’t have anything intelligent to say, say something, anything, oh shit nothings coming out of my mouth, what do I do, what do I say, wheres the script, bloody hell, I don’t know what to do, even if I did I can’t move….” It was pretty ordinary.

Stuff like this (running groups, meetings or workshops) is not easy at first but it’s like anything, once you learn some of the tricks and have plenty of practice you just do it without having to think about it. Fast Forward to now, I can’t even believe that was me, now I can walk into a room and just facilitate away with the goal in mind. I can plan a whole program in 10 minutes but when you think about it, its not really 10 minutes it’s the 10 plus years of experience that is present in that moment to bring it all together.

Whenever we try something new, it’s scary, it feels awkward, like we don’t know what we are doing and our negative self talk can be rife. We have to consciously think about each little element and how to actually do it. It is clunky, we can be nervous and it can feel disastrous BUT the thing is the only way to get better at it is to give it a go. We need to practice, refine, learn the skills, give ourselves a break sometimes as it takes time to learn new things before it becomes second nature. Can you remember when you first started driving a car? What it was like to hold the clutch in, put it into gear, revving the engine and releasing the clutch before stalling it or bunny hopping on your way. And down the track, you don’t even think about how you drive your car, You just do it.

So that’s the message for this edition of Ignite Life. Do that thing that you are feeling scared about, the thing that feels completely tricky and awkward, because if you don’t take that first step in giving it a go, it’s always going to feel that way. Take time to refine and don’t compare your first steps with someone who has run the marathon.

We would love to hear what that thing is that you are going to give a go. Lets put it out to the world, sit yourself in the car, put the seat belt on and get ready to drive for the first time.