I’ve discovered my own personal good result that’s come from the COVID-19 crisis.
Call it a silver lining if you’d like; I prefer my own personal good result because I don’t want to dismiss the countless negative results that people are experiencing. This is one good result among the bad, and it’s personal to me.
Here it is: I have finally been able to let go of my Big Fear, the one I suspect is at the root of most of my anxious feelings.
The I-Wouldn’t-Be-Able-To-Handle-It fear.
This fear gives rise to a profound sense of being out of control, always and especially at the first sign of trouble.
Because you’re constantly at risk of not being able to handle whatever comes next, you feel like you’re at the mercy of the fates.
This fear keeps you playing safe, because you worry that a wrong move—or even too big of a right move—would shake things up too much. And you wouldn’t be able to handle it. You’d slide right off the Earth as soon as the ground shifted beneath you.
Before the pandemic exploded in America, I think I was headed toward letting go of my I-Wouldn’t-Be-Able-To-Handle-It fear already. But the sudden shift in reality spun me toward it much faster.
For most of my adult life, I’ve chosen to not make decisions. Instead, I just followed what was easiest, because I was afraid that I wouldn’t be able to handle anything but the easy path.
To those that know my story, this might sound untrue. I haven’t lived a 100% conventional life, after all, and many people consider the conventional path the “safe path” or the “easy option.”
I didn’t get a law degree like my parents wanted, get a secure job in an office in my home city, and then get married.
I moved to Spain on my own at 21! I’ve chosen a risky entrepreneurial lifestyle! I moved across the country to a big city where I knew no one!
But the truth is, if the conventional track had seemed easier to me, I would have chosen it. Getting an advanced degree, convincing an employer to hire me, finding belonging in my home city? Those things sounded too difficult. Or rather, it seemed likely I would fail at them. And that would have been too much to handle.
So, instead, I followed what felt to me the easier path. Move away, become anonymous, avoid making a career decision for as long as I could. Even my current career as a copywriter, I often describe as having “fallen into”—at least in the beginning. (Now, I’ve taken ownership over it and love it.)
That’s why it’s come as something of a surprise—a good result—to find that in the midst of a global crisis over which I have zero control, I’ve found myself rising to the challenge.
Letting go, finally, of the belief that I wouldn’t be able to handle it.
Just when I believed I’d fall apart the most, I’m not.
I’m making conscious choices to keep moving forward:
- Limiting my COVID-19 related news intake to once per week
- Devoting more time than ever to facing my emotions head on (with a therapist, even)
- Putting myself out there in my marketing for my business
- Taking an objective look at how to run my business better right now
- Not second-guessing my instincts and ideas and being bold about sharing them
- Finally owning my choices
I’ve adopted a new self-soothing mantra to chant whenever I start to feel as though I have no control.
Where I used to say everything will be okay, I now say…
Even if it’s not okay, I’ll able to handle it.
Content courtesy of Krista Walsh, creative copywriting for purpose-driven companies and passionate people
CONTRIBUTING AUTHOR, KRISTA WALSH
Krista Walsh writes website copy, blog posts, and product descriptions for small eCommerce companies and service-based solopreneurs. Her writing and messaging strategies help her clients speak to their customers’ values and emotions, for meaningful sales.
In her free time, she writes about purpose-driven business and freelance life at kristawalshcopywriter.com. On the off chance she’s not writing, she’s volunteering to walk the big ole’ dogs over at the Dog Café LA or watching (pretty bad honestly) TV dramas on Netflix.