I will decide not to be scared.

I have nearly half a dozen very sweet and very smart nieces; I am truly blessed with abundance in the niece department. I went to pick Anna up from school the other day; she is 6 and a proper poppet. As we set off for ice-cream, the park and a wander around the 2-dollar shop (yes yes, so I spoil her, sue me!), she was chattering on about her day in that way only 6-year-olds can. She was talking about how she had volunteered to stand up and talk the following week in front of the whole class about this project she was doing. She was very serious and earnest about it and how she wanted to do a good job in front of everyone. “That’s very brave,” I said.

“Well…it’s not brave”, Anna slurped thoughtfully through her hokey pokey. “You don’t need to be brave…if you decide not to be scared”.

Well BOOM, little girl. Good one. That is indeed true. You don’t need to be brave if you decide not to be scared. If you decide something is not inherently scary then no courage or bravery is required. You just do it. Maybe even relish and enjoy it.  You‘ve gotta love the irrefutable logic that comes out of the mouths of babes.

It’s a fabulous lesson to ponder, is it not?

How we define a situation dictates what we need to bring to it.

If we define a situation as boring, then we are going to need to bring persistence.

If we define a situation as hard, then we are required to pack our willpower.

If we define someone or something as scary, we need to muster our courage.

It gave me pause for thought and I hope it does for you today. I had a piece of Boomerang Admin I had been putting off (Boomerang Admin, you know the sort, you think you have sorted it, it’s DONE, you have thrown the task away forever but it keeps coming back. Form tick box is not ticked right. Payment has not gone through. Query on fulfilment. Code not selected. Yada Yada Yada. Boomerang Admin.) I’d filed this task mentally under the helpful category of TEDIOUS RED TAPE I SHOULDN’T HAVE TO WASTE MY TIME ON REPEATEDLY. It was requiring every drop of willpower, persistence and tenacity I could possibly marshal to overcome the overwhelming inertia to actually get it fixed.

Realising that if I stopped defining it as tedious I wouldn’t need to bring any of my willpower reserves was a game-changer. If I decide not to be bored then I don’t need to force myself to pay attention. Redefining the situation from tedious to an opportunity to get clarity and completion meant no persistence needed. Plus, I have to say I got it done in about a tenth of the time I thought I would.

We tend to have well-ingrained habits of definition around certain situations in our life.  Have a think. There is bound to be something or someone who is scaring or boring the pants off you requiring you to bring your willpower or bring your brave.

Have a look if a change of definition might help you; because you don’t need to be brave, if you decide not to be scared.

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