Hello everyone! Welcome to episode 101! Today is June 20, 2023, and I am recording today’s show from Mount Rushmore! How cool is that? I’m sitting here inside my RV right now looking out the window at the gorgeous rolling green hills of South Dakota! I didn’t know that South Dakota was so beautiful!
I was hiking in Badlands National Park yesterday and it was awesome. It’s such interesting terrain! I felt like I was walking on Mars! If you don’t know much about the Badlands, it’s a canyon of white and orange rugged peaks that were formed 500,000 years ago from the Cheyenne and White Rivers. It’s like a baby Grand Canyon! If you haven’t been to the Badlands, add it to your bucket list!
I’m sharing my bucket list adventures on Instagram, so make sure you follow for the fun! You can find my profile under Wendy Valentine or The Midlife Makeover Show. I will be traveling to Devil’s Tower this weekend and off to the Grand Tetons, Yellowstone, Glacier National Park, cruising down the coast of Washington, Oregon, and California, and then wherever the RV takes me! Thankfully, the price of diesel has gone down to about $3.50 per gallon! Shewee!
I must say, traveling by RV is really cool. Obviously, you get to see amazing places, and you also get to meet awesome people. A quick hello to my new RV buddies out there, Kevin and Sandra, Jeff and Debbie, Lori and Russ, and their lil’ pups, Jack and Daisy! I wish all of you the best on your RV adventures and hopefully our paths will cross again someday!
Something else I love about driving an RV across the country is that it’s so empowering and rewarding. It might seem silly, but driving this big house on wheels gives me such a sense of accomplishment. I feel like such a badass!
It’s funny to think back to when I first drove the RV in October of 2021. I flew from Chicago to Nashville on Saturday to buy the RV and then drive the RV back to Chicago on Sunday. By myself. Yikes! When the sales rep handed me the keys to the RV, I was excited and terrified all at the same time! It was quite the Oh shit! moment for me. When I drove off the lot, I was thinking, what in the world am I doing? I don’t how to drive an RV! It took me over an hour of driving just to work up the courage to change lanes.
Driving a 25-foot RV was quite the challenge for me, but y’all should see me now! I’m weaving in and out of traffic like a boss! I conquered that challenge, but I’ve added a recent challenge to my RV journey, because I decided to tow a car this time. It adds about another 10 feet, which means I’m driving 35 feet between the RV and the car. Holy moly. I was so nervous when I hit the gas pedal towing the car behind me–– hoping that I hooked up the car correctly and it wouldn’t roll away –– and I was especially nervous to make a turn, and of course, to change lanes!
When I was gripping onto the steering wheel, I reminded myself of how terrified I felt when I took off in the RV the first time and how invigorating it felt when I conquered my fears and drove that sucker all the way from Nashville to Chicago.
I said to myself, Wendy, you got this shit. I took a deep breath, pushed on the gas, and I did it! And you should see me now you guys! I’m cruising down the highway and up the mountains like I was driving a go-cart! Watch out people! Here comes Wendy!
There is a reason I’m sharing my little, but big achievements with you. I want to encourage you to go after the stuff in life that scares you, because it’s conquering the scary stuff that creates courage. You don’t just automatically have courage. You create courage. You create courage by taking action and doing things in life that are outside your comfort zone. They call it a comfort zone for a reason. It’s comfortable!
But you have to get comfortable getting Un-comfortable. Why? Because a comfort zone is a beautiful place, but nothing ever grows there. If you want to grow in life and you want to be strong, courageous, and more resilient, then you must get outside your comfort zone and conquer your fears.
I’ve been thinking quite a bit about this whole courage thing lately. Especially since I have lots of time to think while I drive an RV across the country! I’ve also been thinking about courage while I write my new book. The book I’m writing is a step-by-step process on how to reinvent yourself at midlife. It’s the same process I personally used to get me from a midlife crisis to a midlife awakening. It was the book I wish I had when I went through my divorce, when I was grieving from the death of my brother, when I was broke and unemployed, and had no idea what step to take next in my life. I needed a guide on how to reinvent Wendy, but there wasn’t a book out there to help me. I’m writing that book now, so you’ll get the help you need during your midlife makeover.
When I was writing a chapter the other day, I was thinking a lot about my reader and what they needed to hear. From what people have shared with me when trying to move forward in their lives, it always comes down to one thing–––courage. They wish they had the courage to get out of their marriage, to start a business, change careers, move to another country, or heck, even drive an RV across the country! Who would do such a crazy thing?! That’s’ nuts!
Anyway, no matter how good I am at writing, even if I give you a step-by-step guide on how to reinvent yourself, I cannot give you the courage to reinvent your life. The courage must come from you. In other words, I cannot give you a jar filled with courage. Instead, you have to fill your own jar with courage.
Today is your lucky day, because I am handing you a brand-new glass jar with your name on it! Not only that, but I am also giving you 6 ways to fill up your jar of courage.
1. Become friends with your fears
It’s okay to have fears. As a matter of fact, there is no such thing as being fearless. You can have less fears, but you cannot be without fears completely. You are a human being being human and we all have fears. Acknowledge your fears, accept your fears, and become friends with your fears. Don’t fear your fear!
2. Uncover your fears
Now that you have accepted your fears, figure out what is underneath your fears. Try to understand why the fear even resides with you in the first place. A fear is really just a limiting belief about yourself and your ability to conquer something fearful in life. I’ve squashed a lot of my fears by simply questioning them and then realizing they really made no sense to hang onto them. We hold onto many of our fears and beliefs subconsciously, so you have to bring those fears to the surface in order to squash them.
3. Cheer through your fear
I’ve said this many times on this podcast, but you really have to become your own cheerleader in life. You have to cheer yourself on and root for you. Listen to your inner voice and make the roar of your cheerleader louder than the roar of your critic. Drown out the critic and cheer yourself on. Just like when I was gripping the steering wheel when I was scared to drive the RV, I said to myself, Wendy, you got this shit. So yes, you got this shit.
4. Start small
If conquering a huge fear seems really scary, then start small. It’s better than not starting at all. For example, if you have a dream of owning your own coffee shop, but taking the leap seems really scary, then start small by maybe attending a coffee bean roasting class. Let’s say they give you a Coffee Bean Roaster Certificate and just that little certificate alone gives you a little boost of courage. No matter how small or big the boost of courage, you can add it to your jar of courage.
5. Stop the perfection
One reason people don’t overcome their fears and therefore don’t gain more courage is because they are afraid to make a mistake. Well, you will be happy to hear that there are no mistakes in life. Only retakes. If something doesn’t go as planned, I assure you that it played out the way it was supposed to play out. Since there are no mistakes in life, you can’t go wrong by going after your dreams and conquering your fears. It’s better to leap then to not leap at all. If you don’t leap, then you will regret it. Fill up your jar of courage by throwing the perfectionism out the window and going for it.
6. Make it a habit
Continue to push yourself out of your comfort zone and do things in life that scare you. Again, this is how you grow and evolve. This is how you become your most authentic self. I promise that the more courageous steps you take in your life, no matter how small or big the step, the act of taking those steps will provide you so much joy and pride. You will be so proud of yourself for doing hard things in life. The more you do, the easier it gets too. The more you conquer your fears, the more you build up your courage. Pretty soon, your jar of courage will be overflowing, and you’ll need a new jar!
Today, I want you to think about something you can do in your life to add to your jar of courage. Again, it could be something big or small. Maybe you need to finally have that difficult conversation with someone you’ve been putting off for so long. Maybe you need to finally sign up for that marathon. Maybe you need to sell your house. Maybe you need to end a relationship. Maybe you need to put in your notice at work. Maybe you need to hike Mount Everest. Conquer your fears and fill up that jar of courage!
By the way, I would love to hear from you! If you do something bold and brave and add it to your jar of courage, I want to hear about it! Feel free to email me at email@example.com or you can leave me a message on the midlife hotline at 888-238-2998. That would make me so happy to hear from you and to hear that you are out there slaying your life.
As for me adding to my jar of courage, I am going to conquer some daring hikes up ahead on my trip. They will make driving an RV and towing a car seem like nothing!
I hope this show inspired you to create more courage in your life. Creating more courage will help you to create a life you love!
Thank everyone for listening to episode 101! Enjoy your week and I will chat with you on Thursday!
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