The training wheels didn’t come off my bike until I was almost ten.
My brother, David, decided I was far too old for training wheels; therefore enlisting his best friend, Barclay, to convince me to give up my ‘baby wheels’.
They cornered me after church one Sunday afternoon, determination in their eyes.
“I can’t do it! I shook my head. Fat crocodile tears rolled down my cheeks.
I was afraid of failing.
Terrified of embarrassing myself, I panicked at the thought of removing my safety gear. I didn’t trust in my own abilities to balance without the extra support.
What if I couldn’t achieve the goal and disappointed my brother? What if I crashed in front of Barclay?
What if I got hurt?
These doubts were racing through my head. I couldn’t turn them off. Those incessant thoughts were stopping me from taking action and believing in myself.
But my brother was resolute, refusing to take ‘NO’ for an answer. He knew I could do it and he made certain I got back on again and again. Failure wasn’t an option.
My brother was an entrepreneur early in life.
He was brave, overly extroverted and was involved in a wide variety of high school activities from the debate team to theater to the student body. He made friends easily and was accepted within every social circle.
Without any encouragement, he started his own paper route when he was 12 and launched his first business when he was just a teenager.
Did he truly believe his first business at 16 would be a success?
Knowing David, he probably did!
But I couldn’t tell the difference. Perhaps he was faking all of that confidence but not once did he fail to try. He took initiative and he took risks.
From where I stood, my brother never failed.
Now that I am an adult I know this isn’t true. Of course he missed a few steps along the way. But looking back, I can only recall the things he achieved.
That’s the point, though, isn’t it?
Even then, he pushed me to try something I was afraid of doing.
That Sunday afternoon they ran alongside my bike, guiding me through the church parking lot. They cheered me on, building up my confidence. Before long I was soaring! I was experiencing a newfound freedom that comes with conquering your fears.
Conquering my Fears…
Over the last few years, I’ve only dipped my toes into the icy waters of social media. It’s difficult finding my voice and determining how to proceed into this new arena of direct contact and instant gratification.
It’s a new way of doing business and it’s scary without training wheels.
If you take a step back, it’s easier to see the bigger picture.
We are social creatures and we NEED others to help lift us up and move us forward. Let’s make social media have THAT purpose!
It looks perfect on the outside
The cold, hard truth is that social media gets us focusing on the outside success of other people while simultaneously obsessing over our own failures!
With instant access to everyone you’ve EVER known, I can easily get ‘sucked in’ only to find myself an hour later wishing I had a new car or a puppy or that cool thing-a-ma-gig…
This never ending cycle gets us scrambling to document every mediocre detail of life and this contributes to our feelings of inadequacy.
And it isn’t healthy for children to begin feeling inadequate at such a young age. That’s for their teenage years! Ha.
I want to help forge a new way to interact online. Create online communities.
So here I am, pouring my words onto a blank screen choosing to move forward in positive and productive way. Social media is not a place to openly air your grievances or chastise others.
It should be a place to share, support and learn from one another. Knowledge is power and it’s right here at our fingertips!
So here I am hoping on the social media bicycle. I am blogging again, telling stories with words. Pushing forward into uncharted territory.
I’m ready to feel like I did that day on my bike… flying free, watching the ground beneath me drop away. Zooming forward into a brand new day.
Until Next Time,