Embrace The Butterfly

May 2, 2012 in Creating Simple Living by Lorilee Lippincott

Image: Salvatore Vuono / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Last night should have been a breakthrough for me. …let me explain.  

A few weeks ago World Vision sent me an e-mail asking me if I would volunteer at their booth for a Natalie Grant concert. I am not special, I am just a donor in the area and I have been called several times and asked for different concerts.  I have always said no.  I love Christian music, I am too cheap to buy my own tickets and go, I believe in World Vision and would love to help them get the word out, and I have no trouble talking to lots of people (as long as I am part of the crowd not on a stage… still working on that).  The thing is I hate driving.  I am a driving chicken.

It probably goes back to the time I got my learners licence and within about 20 or 30 seconds of taking the wheel I totaled my mom’s car and almost killed her.  (she was fine, but we were hit on her side).  For some reason I am not worried about tragic huge accidents, I am worried I will just get in a wreck somewhere strange and be stuck trying to figure out the mess.  I am not good at directions and I can’t multi-task well driving.  Taking my kids anywhere new or downtown at all takes years off my life and I avoid it.

So you don’t think I am a complete mess I do drive when I need to.  I am fine driving around my area of town and am fine with taking the kids lots of places that I know the way well.  I am fine with highway driving and my children lecture me from the backseat about speeding.  (isn’t it great when they learn all these things…).  However, something about not knowing where I am going and/or heavy traffic just freaks me out.  This has lead me to avoid circumstances where I might have to drive alone somewhere I don’t know.  Silly, I know.

Well, when they sent the e-mail a few weeks ago I made up my mind to go for it.  Truthfully this isn’t that big of a deal, it shouldn’t be at least.  I was excited and was planning on writing up this ‘mini victory’ for you in this post.  Then, just a few hours before I needed to leave for the concert I got a call saying that the person in charge of the World Vision booth had hurt their foot and the booth would have to be cancelled. I wasn’t sure whether to be relieved or disappointed.  Either way, processing through the silliness of my missing out on probably at least 5 opportunities in the past few years has helped.  When I get another opportunity I will jump on it.

A few weeks ago I was listening to The Big Idea in the car (long trip on wide highway with little traffic :)) and he used the term ‘embrace the butterfly’.  This jumped out at me because this is what I have been trying to do.  As humans we just feel more comfortable doing what we know but to grow we need to broaden, experience, and learn more.  I have heard people talk about doing something new and uncomfortable everyday.   Great idea, but I’m not there yet.  Over the past year minimalism, blogging, writing my book, trying to promote my book, all have had me sitting scared and putting off what I need to do because it wasn’t comfortable.

A friend who is trying to grow her business told me last weekend “I would get way more done if I didn’t sit and stare at the  phone for so long before getting up the courage to actually dial”.  This is exactly it.  Anyone trying to grow and learn has these ‘butterflies in their stomach’.  Not sure how this English saying started, but it seems to fit.  Somehow our scared feeling goes to our stomach.

However, successful people say they have butterflies as well.  They learn to live with them, to embrace them, to enjoy them.  Having butterflies means you are stretching out of your comfort zone.  I want to become just a bit addicted to butterflies because I want to be driven to keep growing.

I read this article by Jeff Goins that seemed to go well with this topic.  Goinswriter.com is my new favorite blog right now.

Do you have butterflies?

Also, thanks so much to everyone for the encouragement from Mondays post.  I love you all!