I Am Afraid
I am afraid. I have an opportunity. A huge opportunity to speak at a national summit and I am afraid.
I’m terrified. I’m terrified I will blow it. That this great desire I have inside me to speak my truth will result in humiliation. I’m afraid I will realize how absolutely stupid I was to want to move into public speaking.
I stumble when I speak to other people and I’m not sure if that is something that has happened to me recently or if I’ve always been like that. It’s like I can’t seem to organize my thoughts and they come out my mouth in a jumble. I find myself wishing I could have written what I wanted to say and then read it aloud, even just in a normal conversation.
I haven’t performed on stage in over 10 years. I sang solos and did dance numbers as a teenager. I acted in a dinner theater in my early 20s. I was part of a small improv troupe in my mid-20s. It used to feel so natural to me, but I still never shook the nerves.
When I made the decision in my mind to pursue speaking, I told myself that it would be my way to return to performing. Something I had loved so much and once thought I would make my career. Something inside me said, “Chrystal, this is your chance to fill that empty part of your life that has been missing for years.”
But is it? Will it feel the same? Or will I make a fool out of myself?
There are a lot of people out there that want to inspire you and they will tell you how they believe in themselves and never doubt themselves and blah blah blah.
I’m not one of those people.
I am the person who is going to tell you that I am scared as all fuck not just of failing miserably at this– but of speaking in general in front of others.
I am also the person who is going to do it anyway.
If you aren’t at least a little afraid to do something, do you really even care about it? I’m not sure how you can. Self-doubt is natural, and instead of pretending it doesn’t exist, maybe you just have to learn to fight it.
This is so important to me. Speaking my truth and sharing my message is so important to me. I think I am finally, finally ready to do that, because now I have all the pieces that I was missing before.
I want to change lives. This 10 minutes on stage is one of many steps along the way to what I believe will be my legacy.
I am afraid. I am. But I know myself and I know I will do everything in my power to push through the fear and do the best job I possibly can.