I didn’t realize when I posted it that I’d so quickly find myself deep in my own personal well of fear. But that’s exactly what happened yesterday.
I had been asked to be a guest on my local news station’s show Parent to Parent to talk about an article I wrote in Parent Map Magazine about how moms can foster authentic communication with their teen daughters. I’ve done a few TV interviews in the past and had always enjoyed them, so I said ‘sure’ without really thinking about it. And for the most part, I was looking forward to the segment until Sunday night at about 9pm.
With eleven hours to go until my appearance, I started to freak out. My inner lizard was going crazy, asking me what the hell I had been thinking to agree to do a live segment. I mean, what if I had a brain freeze or I forgot my main points? What if I just looked like a stumbling idiot and lost all credibility as a teen expert? (My lizard was having a field day.)
I woke up the next morning at 4:45am, even though I didn’t need to be at the studio until 7:45, and as I laid there in bed, I was in full fight or flight response. So I tapped into my tools, like imagining how I wanted to feel while I was doing the interview, visualizing the sense of accomplishment I’d feel when I was done, acknowledging my lizard fears and politely asking them to go away, taking slow, deep breaths, dropping into wordlessness. You name it, I tried it. But still, the anxiety continued.
As I sat in my car before going into the studio a few hours later, I was still a wreck. I soooo wanted the whole thing to be over with. But as the clock ticked closer to my air time, the voice in my head reminded me that the only way to get through it is to get through it. Put one step in front of the other, sit in that interview chair, and trust in my core that I was safe and everything was going to work out exactly as it was supposed to.
So I did.
And I survived.
And, as the rational part of me could have predicted, I even had fun.
But wow…what a great reminder that facing fear can be tough. Fear can make your insides feel like they’re mush, turn you into a terrified child, bring into question even your deepest, most comforting belief systems.
But sometimes fear is what you have to go through to get to the other side.
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(If you want to see how it all turned out, you can watch the Parent to Parent segment here!)