One Small Step: Do Something Scary

“Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” (Christopher Robin to Pooh) ~ A.A. Milne

I'm a believer in pushing fear boundaries. As someone who has spent much of my life making decisions based on fear, it's an important strategy for helping me become the person I strive to be. I've done a ropes course, despite my fear of heights. I've pushed myself to speak in public about humane education issues, even though doing so stresses me out for weeks ahead of time. I've spoken up during scary confrontations with others. I've reached out for help. And almost every time, despite the terror and discomfort involved, I've been glad I did it. It has helped me grow, and learn to stretch myself even more.

So I invite you to choose a day -- maybe today! -- and challenge yourself to do something positive that scares you. If you're a teacher, maybe today you teach without the text book; or give your students control of their learning; or discuss that controversial issue in class; or talk about humane education with a co-worker or administrator. If you're an activist, maybe you write that letter to your legislative official; or start that project that's been lurking in the back of your mind, but has felt too scary to begin; or strive to practice compassion in the face of the world's horrors. And if you're a concerned citizen, perhaps today is the day you bike to work; or join that community group; or talk to your neighbor about what vitalizes and concerns you.

Today’s a great day to push yourself to do something you've wanted to do to challenge the status quo and build on your passion to create a better you and a better world.

After you've done that scary thing, ask yourself: How did it feel? What did you learn?

Then plan to do it again.

~ Marsha

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