Feel the GULP and Do It Anyway

"A (wo)man who says (s)he has never been scared is either lying or else (s)he's never been any place or done anything." - Louis L'Amour

Think of a time in your life when you were just about to take a big leap forward by doing something you had never done before. You were just about to take a step you've never taken before and felt anxious or afraid. Perhaps your heart was racing, palms sweating. Perhaps you were breathing a bit shallow and were nervous and shaking a bit.

Roller Coaster by Jeremy Thompson. Source: Flickr Untouched

Perhaps you wished you were any other place than where you were at that moment. Perhaps you're feeling it all again at this moment.

This is what is called a GULP.

A GULP occurs when you are stepping out of a comfort zone that is no longer serving you into an area that you are not familiar with. If you knew how to do it, it wouldn't provide you with the GULP!

If you knew how to do it, it wouldn't provide you with that feeling of 'scary exhilaration'. Feeling the GULP is like riding a roller coaster. It’s that feeling you get as you slowly climb up the coaster and can see the precipice ahead of you. You reach the top and know what is coming next will be scary, fast, cause your heart rate to increase and is new. That’s when you feel the GULP. Just before you head down.

If you knew how to do it, it wouldn't provide you with the juiciness of leaving a comfort zone and experiencing something new and exciting.

“We fear the thing we want the most." - Dr. Robert Anthony

What helps us all feel the GULP and do it anyway is to remember what it is we hunger for...what must be. When you start to feel a bit fearful and questioning yourself on the next thing you must do even if it is scary, this is the time to connect with the hunger you have for what must change. This is what will pull you (not push you) through the GULP. This is what will help you move on to the next GULP. And GULP by GULP you will have your vision become a reality.

There is an acronym for fear that I've heard several times: False Evidence Appearing Real. When you're feeling that anxiety coming on, think about what you are making up about the situation. Think about what is false about what you are making up.

GULP by Nrico. Source: Flickr Untouched

Here are a few ways to help you move through the GULP:
  • Remember these doubts are a good thing. They mean you are stepping out of your comfort zones and growing.
  • Take action. You'll feel so much better coming out on the other side and it will be easier next time.
  • Find an ally who you can commit to or who has been through the same or a similar situation. You don't have to do this alone.
  • Ask yourself where else could you get the same 'scary exhilaration' feeling of being on a roller coaster (The Manhattan at Las Vegas is a great one!) without paying amusement park prices?

"Many of our fears are tissue paper thin, and a single courageous step would carry us clear through them."- Brendan Francis


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