This afternoon on Twitter I saw that Jeff Goins was giving away his ebook You Are a Writer (So Start Acting Like One) for free (by the way get the book today!!). Since I'm very interested in growing my blog and I happen to love reading any books, but especially free ones, I jumped at the chance. I was barely into the book when this line jumped off the page (or in my case the ipad screen:) :
"Before others will believe what is true about you, you'll have to believe it first yourself"- Jeff Goins
This has been my dilemma for quite some time and maybe it is for you too? Do you have hopes and dreams for yourself but lack confidence? Do you see others doing things you dream of doing and wonder if it will ever be your turn? Do you feel so intimidated by the success and confidence of others that you feel embarrassed and worried that someone will call you out for being a fraud? I got to admit it's sometimes how I feel about blogging. I like sharing my life, my stories, the lessons God is teaching me and connecting with all of you. And I would love to grow my blog into a larger community. Some of it's for selfish reasons-of course but a lot of it is wanting to use my life to matter, to count and to glorify God and I know that blogging can be a great way to do that. But the truth is before others will see me as someone capable of having and growing a blog ministry I need to be able to see that in myself. And I doubt myself so much.
Growing up my sister and I did musical theater. I spent all my free time auditioning, rehearsing and performing shows around town. I loved it and to this day it's still one of my favorite things to do. All throughout elementary school and middle school I had the leads in shows and then I got to high school. Suddenly I was a little fish in a big pond. These kids were older, more experienced and frankly, especially when it came to singing, much better than me. After one bad audition I decided I was never going to sing by myself in front of people again. Fear won out. My confidence was shot and I gave up.
And to this day it's still my problem. I can be confident and assured in who I am and what I do and if someone better or more successful comes along suddenly I'm the girl at the Sound of Music audition who decides she's never singing again.
And in some ways I've done this with blogging. I'm much more comfortable being a cheerleader for other people-their books, blogs, ministries and events. And when it comes to even slightly having to "promote" myself I get so uncomfortable. I feel like other people are looking at me wondering why I think I have any business being in a position of influence at all. And the truth is that isn't what other people think. It's what I think about myself. And as long as I think that about myself, I'll never be able to move forward. And as I sit here writing this I start to think about what a perfect attack this is for the enemy-to make me lack confidence so much that I'm so paralyzed, that I hide and do nothing.
Maybe you're in a similar place. Has God given you an idea, a passion or a dream but you lack confidence to step out? Maybe we can be cheerleaders for each other? You cheer me on in growing a blogging ministry, sharing my life and putting myself out there and I'll cheer you on in the dream God has given you. Just like the many recent risks God has been asking me to step out and take, I know that it's risky to lay down the fear and self doubt I've stood behind for years and step out and be the woman God wants me to be. But as I'm learning the bigger risk is doing nothing at all. So one step at a time, I'm putting myself and my story out there and I hope you'll join me for the journey.