Our doubts are traitors

December 06, 2017
Shakespeare said "our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win by fearing to attempt". i.e. we get frozen by the headlights.

When I have looked for work or indeed done so many things in life for the first time, I have put up so many imaginary boundaries as to why things won't work. Given that I suffered at the hands of vicious panic attacks for 20 years, I realise I am more prone to worrying about "what if" than the next four people. I get it, change is scary. And baby, I can catastrophise.

BUT my bravest moves have came when either one of two things happened
1) I got so fired up by the prospect of improving things that I forgot to be scared
2) Staying the same was scaring me too much to not move forward. I associated too much pain with staying where I was.

I met my husband in 2006, at the age of 36. By then, pretty much all of my peers from university and dearest friends had shacked up and I remember I had a particularly nasty vengeful ex who was very publicly rubbing my nose in his new romance, which moved into a marriage and a white picket fence. Frankly it was too humiliating for words. If I heard tell of one more engagement I would have had to shave my head and join the monastery rather than buy another fascinator and make the pilgrimage up the M1 to the idyllic childhood village church.

 So I joined an online dating website. Now, back then, no-one went on Tinder and swiped left at the hotel bar whilst their mum did the same next to them. It was. simply. not. cool. You were considered desperate to do it but, well, desperate I was.

The future Mr Izard was date no. 2 from the website. I swallowed my pride, I worked up my profile and I jumped in fully clothed. We emailed each other in June and by October we were engaged.

When did you get so desperate that you simply had to make a change, and the risk paid dividends? If you can just think up one teeny tiny example, then you have a testimony. You can remind yourself "I've been here before, I nailed it, and so I will do it again". Simple technique, but terrifyingly effective. 

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