I stopped making New Year’s resolutions many years ago. Mostly because I could never keep them. I would always vow to eat healthier and work out more, and I could never live up to the standards I had set for myself.
After several New Years with no resolutions I decided to set a goal for the remainder of my life – to push myself outside of my comfort zone as much as possible. In the beginning I was much more disciplined about documenting my “scary” endeavors – going to a new workout class where I didn’t know a soul, or the moves – trying something new athletically, or perhaps hardest of all, admitting that I really don’t know what I’m doing and ask for help.
I’m not the most athletic person and have never really been great at anything. Academics were always easy for me, but I failed to see that as a strength growing up. Now, whenever I doubt myself or feel like the awkward girl in sixth grade, I remind myself that no one is watching except for me. That usually helps. Thankfully, I’ve also developed a great sense of humor.
Right before I found out I was pregnant (winter 2008) I started taking guitar lessons with Jean-Paul at Maytan Music Center in Reno. Not only is Jean-Paul a musical genuis, he’s incredibly patient and encouraging. (I know, it’s his job, but you never, ever feel that way in his class.)
Tonight I went way beyond my comfort zone. I would even venture to say further than traveling internationally alone. I played my guitar (and sang!) in front of a group of people. Even people I know! I’ve been known to attempt to play with friends after a few glasses of wine, but nothing to this level.
Even when I practice at home I stop playing if Manfriend comes into the room. He’s an amazing guitarist, and like most things, I’m self-conscious. While Manfriend couldn’t be there tonight, I did perform in front of four of my closest friends. I was so nervous. My voice was shaky, and I couldn’t see a soul ten feet in front of me. But I got through it and felt like a million bucks – even if I missed a few chords. This was precisely the type of motivation I needed to practice, practice, practice.
Sharing the video here with you is taking the next leap for me. Please note – I talk when I’m nervous, which is why I felt the need to explain what I was playing to buy me some time.
What have you done lately that pushed you outside of your comfort zone?
September 24, 2011 will mark my five year anniversary in Reno. I love thinking back to the first time I drove into Reno from I-80. It was the middle of the night, the downtown lights were glowing, and I felt a sinking feeling in my stomach. I didn’t know it at the time, but I was about to make the best decision of my life.
It’s a belated Photo Friday, but what I intended to share two days ago.
This is a shot of Ladies Night on Regan Beach in South Tahoe with the South Tahoe Standup Paddle Shop. If you’ve thought about trying this sport, but not sure how to get started, hang out with the good people of South Tahoe SUP. Our first paddle was comfortable and unbelievably fun!
Have you tried SUP yet? If so, what did you think?
I’m not a winner. Not in the Charlie Sheen way, but in the I-never-win-contests kind of way.
Actually, at Scrapbooking Camp last year I won a prize, but I think everyone in the room “won” something, so that probably doesn’t count. (Yes, I attend Scrapbooking Camp.)