3 days, 36 solid hours. That’s the amount of time I spent this week learning how to conquer one of my biggest fears. Here’s the thing: ever since I can remember, I’ve always been a little… awkward. Both an extrovert and introvert, I love the idea of speaking to people, sharing and teaching – but I’m terrified of it at the same time. Have you ever felt insecurity holding you back from the things you want to achieve? We’re good at making up excuses why we don’t do go for these big, scary dreams: “It’s too hard. I’m too busy. I’m comfortable with where I am now.”
Perhaps you’ve had the same experience where, one day, life offers you an opportunity and you have to make a choice to either stay comfortable or expand your horizons. That’s what happened to me last year when Del invited me to teach workshops with her. It’s funny how people come into your life right when you need them. Now, remember I’m terrified at the thought of speaking in front of people, so you can imagine my surprise when when she asked and I heard myself answer “Yes”.
If you could be standing next to me when I’m about to teach a workshop… I’m looking out at a group of people. I can see their faces staring back at me, some are younger than me, some are older. My hands are starting to shake a little. The room is silent. They’re looking at me hoping to learn something, to be inspired. If you could feel my pulse, just before I begin to speak, you’d know that my heart is pumping a million beats per minute and I feel like I’m about to implode.
Here’s what I know – we all have insecurities, fears and imperfections and, for me, I had to decide: do I settle for a life that is comfortable -or- do I go after my dreams of connecting, sharing and inspiring no matter how fast it makes my heart beat.
So I signed up for a public speaking workshop to learn new skills and to empower myself. I’m so glad that I did. No, I haven’t cured of my fear of public speaking, but I’ve decided to tell that little voice in my head that says “Militza, you’ll make a fool of yourself!” that it’s ok. My hands may shake a little, I may stumble over my words, I may even feel uncomfortable – but life’s too short to play it safe. I want to live a life that I love – full of meaning, connections, experiences and adventure!
That was a long introduction, but thanks for letting me tell you my story. I knew going in to a 3 day workshop wouldn’t be easy, so I prepared for it. Every night, before I went to bed, I made massive amounts of green juices and packed a lunchbag with healthy treats for the next day. Even though I had to get up at 6:30 every morning, I made sure to leave the house with a good breakfast in me. Here are some pictures that I took and some little tips that helped me along the way.
- I pre-made a big batch of pasta sauce for quick dinners
- I made green juice each night and stored them in mason jars for the next day. My favorite combo was cucumber, celery and green grapes.
- I soaked seeds and then the next day dried them in the oven to make a trail mix with seeds and raisins. Why soak? Nature wants to make sure that seeds don’t sprout until the conditions are right, so they have an enzyme blocker to keep them dormant. That enzyme blocker is tough on our digestion and means that we can’t absorb most of the vital nutrients. Try to soak your nuts, grains and beans before eating them, for at least 8 hours.
- My lunch bag, which I packed with fruit and snacks.
- For a quick dinner I made a pre-mix of white rice with quinoa and sesame seeds. The girls won’t touch brown rice, so this makes us both happy – they get added fiber, protein and calcium.
- I packed a few tea bags in my lunch bag, most places will give you hot water in your cup and you can make a sneaky tea
- One of my breakfasts – Del and I call them Superfood Toast. It’s quick to make and fills you up with the good stuff – brown toast with avocado and cherry tomatoes.
- At the workshop, drinking my green juice. Turned out to be quite the conversation piece – a few people came up to me wondering what the heck I was drinking! One lady noticed that I was eating fruit all day and came up to me to say “you really like fruit!” Standing out is a good way to make friends!
- I made a batch of raw brownies as treats for the 3 days. Didn’t bother to shape them into balls, just cut a big old slab of it!
Now, have you ever had that struggle of being afraid of the very thing you want? Have you recently taken steps to achieve a goal or to go after a dream? I’d love to hear about it! Let me know in the comments below!