Today I took a spontaneous trip to London, to find a building in a part of the city that I’d never been to before. The building wasn’t boldly labelled and Google’s fancy maps only seemed to confuse me more. I had to ask directions.

The doorman took me to the lift, and then I was alone, travelling upwards.

The room I entered was filled with people I didn’t know talking to one another. Nobody knew me. I was merely a name on a list that was never referred to. I recognised a few people from the Internet – we all have people we stalk – but that just made them all the more intimidating. There was free beer.

This is not my sort of environment.

Yet, I’d decided it was what I wanted to do, that however terrified I might be, it was worth taking the risk.

But what did I fear? Looking a fool? Coming across as wholly naive?

The man whose talk I went to watch looked similarly nervous during his first slide, but he was talking about something he cared about, and when we really care it’s easier to push. Putting yourself out there, taking the risk is always a heart-thumping moment.

I went to London because I craved a look at a reality that’s a little different from my own. I wanted to put some concrete on a dream.

And because the best moments are heart-thumping moments. The fear is just growing pains.

3 Comments
  • clarepooley33
    Sunday 13 September 2015

    Congratulations! I am reading a book at the moment that talks about letting go of our anxieties and fears. The author says that when we protect ourselves from the things that scare us we stagnate. Only by confronting our fears can we grow spiritually and eventually find peace and contentment. The book was recommended to me by another blogger & it’s called ‘The Untethered Soul’ by Michael A Singer.

    • Catherine Oughtibridge
      Monday 14 September 2015

      Thank you Clare. I’m normally very good at controlling a situation, and therefore reducing the uncertainty that provides the room for fear, but on that occasion I was genuinely out of my comfort zone.

      I get a little mockery for some of my reading choices, but when a book helps you work out what fear looks like I think it really does help. So often I convince myself that I don’t want to do something and it’s not that I don’t want the result of such an action, it’s that I’m scared of how painful doing the action will be, or how embarrassing it might be to try and explain my choices to others.