I lean towards being an extrovert, both socially and professionally. I really feel it’s an attribute that helps me connect with my classes. So, it would stand to reason that blogging would come naturally, right, that the words would jump out of my hands onto the keyboard?? Well, in the words of the famous Lee Corso, “Not so fast, my friend!’
I am frozen by anxiety every time I try to type something. Conservatively speaking, I have wanted to blog approximately 300 times in my professional life. I have wanted to blog about anything and everything from dodgeball, to fitness testing, to working in a challenging professional environment, but every time I sit down…nothing, and I’m up and out of my chair faster than I sat down. Most times without having typed a word. The anxiety is debilitating.
Ironically, it doesn’t affect me in other walks of life. Throw me into a dance contest and I won’t stop until I’m crowned the champion, speak in front of 13,000 people at college graduation, done, but put my thoughts onto “paper” for others to read, well that just won’t happen. I care far too much about how other people view my work, and quite frankly, the mere thought of rejection shuts me down.
How can I stress the importance of social/emotional wellness and self-care through fitness, if I can not practice what I preach? I will do anything for just about anyone, except me. I don’t push myself to do things outside of my comfort zone, however, I have no issues asking my students to do just that, day in and day out. Some may even say I’m a hypocrite. In the education realm, if you are not honest, your students will sniff you out and that genuine connection you worked so hard to build is soon up in smoke.
I am perpetually impressed by some of the HPE rockstars in my professional network. These people are my professional inspiration and in a weird way that contributes to my inability to start anything meaningful. It would crush me to find out that any one, or number, of those people, didn’t hold my work in the same regard in which I hold theirs.
For a long time, I thought I had been doing my best, but the reality is I was lying to myself. I was comfortable and therefore didn’t see the need to push past the boundaries I created. For me, true self-care is to stop taking the easy way out, to start challenging myself to be better, and to block out the noise (that probably isn’t even there). If I am ever going to conquer that fear there’s no better time than now.
So here I am, sitting down to write this blog forcing myself to stay seated until I created something that resembled an educated and honest confession. So I implore you to take the risk, initiate the change, look fear in the eye and say, “not today!” After all, what’s the worst that could happen? Then ask yourself, what’s the best that could happen? You may find that you are very well achieving that which you never thought was possible. I am your first testimonial, your first example of what can happen when boundaries are pushed, anxieties are eased and fears cast aside.
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If Tony’s first blog post has inspired you to share your thoughts and you would like to submit something to the slowchathealth site, please reach out to me and let’s make it happen! You might also like this post in which I shared ‘Why I Blog‘.