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Out on a Limb

6 Comments 16 September 2010

The whole purpose of my starting this blog was to pursue my passion of writing and using that writing to help other women.  It has been a wonderful journey thus far, but no journey is without it’s detours and bumps in the road.  Trying to write this e-book has been an excellent experience in practicing what it is that I preach on my blog.  It is calling me ‘out on a limb’ and am learning to go.

I am afraid.  I fear failure.  I am even paralyzed by those two facts to the point that I haven’t written for my e-book in about a week.  I was on a roll and writing close to 750 words a day for a while there.

So, what happened?  The reality remains that this is new to me.  I am stepping out, pushing myself beyond the boundaries that have both held me captive on so many levels and yet, at the same time, held me ‘safe.’  Safe?  Yes, safe, safe from being vulnerable.  Safe from being tested.  Is it not safer to cling to the trunk than it is to shiver in fear out on the limb?

So, as I move forward with my e-book, I am moving forward in my journey.  I am having to answer the same call that I freely give to others…to live an empowered life that reflects the truth of who I am, not who I know others may be comfortable with me being.  I’ve always heard it said that you can not take someone where you, yourself, have not gone.  So, I am going, I am going places that I have never gone before…out on a limb.

And in going, I am learning…learning to discern between procrastination and being paralyzed.  Having to learn to ask myself the questions that press into the raw core of my fears and having to learn to coach myself to move forward.  One of those fears, not that it is original to me, is attached to that voice in my head that constantly tells me I have nothing to say.  It brings me to a grinding halt as I write, because I discount my wisdom, my intuitive nature, my experience and my heart.  That voice is a brutally damaging voice and I am learning to shut it down, to take its power away.

I am doing that by any means necessary, and one means is by reminding myself of this truth, stated so beautifully by my friend ‘Jack‘ (C.S. Lewis).  Lewis writes this about being original…

“Even in literature and art, no man who bothers about originality will ever be original: whereas if you simply try to tell the truth (without caring twopence how often it has been told before) you will, nine times out of ten, become original without ever having noticed it.”

So, I am going to simply try to tell the truth.  And I am going out on my limb to do it.

Are you willing to climb out on your limb?  What voices are keeping you from taking up the adventure to learn and grow and give?  We are all part of a story, and our part will be told…I am learning to tell mine, I am learning…out on this limb.  Want to join me?

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6 Comments so far

  1. michelle says:

    I find myself listening to that voice way too often telling me I’ll never be THAT good at what I love. It has convinced me so many times to just stay quietly where I am. Sometimes I even think someone or something is waiting to saw the limb off once I get out there instead of believing that those around me are actually supporting it so I go further to the edge. That quote by C.S. Lewis struck a chord with me, too. With this whole photography venture, I try so hard to be so “original” and in doing so, I lose the “truth” and realness of the moment. Thanks for the reminder.

    And…you DO have something to say. So many people benefit from your going out on a limb. I’m one of them.

    • Jorja says:

      michelle, hey woman! thanks for taking the time to comment. i know it is hard for so many people to put themselves out there, even in comments! it is a common theme, i think, among us that we let fear hold us back. it is good to be moving to a place that makes me call all of those voices in my head to account. thank you for adding a positive voice to the choir!

  2. Cynthia says:

    Jorja, Please keep writing and climbing out there so when you do you can call me to join you.!! I have a vision for offering spiritual direction for women but there are many voices within (and they are my negative voices- not someone else telling me what I can’t do) and the voices say things like, “You need a degree in thus and such to be credible.”, “No one will understand what you are trying to do.”, “You can’t make any money doing that.”, “You will be lonely in that work.”, “It will distract you from what you want to invest in your family.”…and the list goes on. On good days I focus on the voice of God telling me, “You are my beloved daughter in whom I am well pleased.” Apparently that’s what Jesus needed to hear before launching out and I guess I need to hear it over and over again myself!

    • Jorja says:

      cynthia, this is what i believe holds so many of us back from contributing. i am sooo excited that you are being self-aware, naming those voices and replacing them with the only one that matters! cheers my friend!

  3. Hey Jorja! Thank you for being so open about the struggle – many of the emotions and thoughts that you describe are very familiar to me! Silencing your inner critic is, at times, so difficult – but it sounds like you’re doing great. Going out on a limb is almost always a good thing!! – Stacey

    • Jorja says:

      stacey, yes, it is a daunting challenge to silence both the inner and outer critic, but anyone who has the courage to climb out on that limb should be prepared for the critics! thanks for the encouragement!!!!

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things to make you wonder~

“I am a frayed and nibbled survivor in a fallen world, and I am getting along. I am aging and eaten and have done my share of eating too. I am not washed and beautiful, in control of a shining world in which everything fits, but instead am wondering awed about on a splintered wreck I've come to care for, whose gnawed trees breathe a delicate air, whose bloodied and scarred creatures are my dearest companions, and whose beauty bats and shines not in its imperfections but overwhelmingly in spite of them...” Annie Dillard

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