Wednesday, October 28, 2009

If you knew you wouldn't fail...


What do you say when fear demands a face off?
Are you the bird who has something to say to the cat? Or do you take flight, nothing left behind but feathers...?

About two years ago a good friend asked me a question.
"What would you do if you knew you couldn't fail?"

I knew. But I'd wallpapered over the desire long ago.
"I'd write," I said.
But it took me another six months to face my fear of failing.

Now I can't imagine my life without words. What if I never answered this question? Would I have missed a large part of the fullness of my life?

Now I ask myself that question all the time. Is there something else I am not doing because I am afraid of failing? Then that is just the thing I need to be doing. I admit. I am the smart mouthed bird that has something to say to the cat... what is the worst that can happen, hey? :)

So what about you? "What would you do if you knew you couldn't fail?"

Most of you are already writing... so I am banning that answer. But I'd love to know, what secrete passions or "maybe I'll try that one day" things have you locked away inside?



31 comments:

  1. I'm quite a bit older than you, Tab, so I've been slowly doing all the things I was always afraid to do. Writing came first. Then it was singing. When I first started I couldn't look up from my shoes because if I did and saw people looking at me, I could only croak out notes. Now I'm singing in a trio at retirement communities and hamming it up with the audience. Go figure!
    karen

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  2. I think I, like Karen, would sing. I love to sing, but I've never considered doing it FOR REAL because let's face it, the odds of making it in music are even worse than our odds for making it with writing. I still love it, and I use my voice whenever I can.

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  3. If I knew I wouldn't fail, I would quit my day job. If I knew for certain that my family would not suffer any loss of luxury or cutback of a necessities, I would do it.

    I have never been a dare taker. Stability is a large part of my sanity.

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  4. Writing was also my biggest fear-of-failure area. On a more frivolous note, if I knew I wouldn't fail, I might like to go on the show "Who Wants to be a Superhero?" I've always wanted to assume my superhero secret identity. :-)

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  5. I'd open a wine bar with live jazz piano and a cigar lounge on a fountained patio. Oh yes indeed!

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  6. If I knew I wouldn't fail, I would have the same answer: I would write. :) But since that answer is banned, I would say: buy a lottery ticket.

    But I think it's great that none of us know whether we'll succeed or fail, yet we're writing anyway. That's the beauty of being passionate about something - no matter what happens, we still do it despite all the fear and uncertainty and frustration.

    I've passed an award on to you at my blog! :)

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  7. I would move to Colorado in a heartbeat. What to do when I get there????. . . maybe running my own bakery, but I wouldn't open until 10:30 AM. I would only work 2-3 days a week since I had to be back at my horse ranch the rest of the time.

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  8. Curator of an art museum. really.

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  9. I'd open a book store. I've always wanted to, but the thought of it failing has held me back. But how awesome would that be?

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  10. I love all these answers. Ava, if you ever move to Colorado, I HAVE to come to your bakery so I can finally meet a blogging friend. I don't know anyone who has a horse ranch, though :D

    If I knew I wouldn't fail...I'd play my guitar for an audience. I'd maybe even try out for a play again...because it terrified me the first time and I'd love to get another chance.

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  11. I love this question. I am here this year, having left my teaching job, exploring the possibilities for a new career - hopefully in writing and teaching writing.

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  12. Hi Tabitha,
    Just wanted to let you know there's a little something waiting for you at my blog on Friday.
    Karen

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  13. What a great question! I honestly don't know though. Before I started writing I honestly had no career aspirations, and not really any dreams. I was content to read as much as possible.
    This is a wonderful thing to think about though...

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  14. Nice post. I've always loved to dance, even took a few adult dance classes, but am I dancing? No! Maybe it's time to dance again?

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  15. I always wanted to try skydiving. Common sense would probably prevent me from pursuing that now though, I suspect I'm entering into those dangerous hip replacement years :D

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  16. I'm doing it, actually! But, if success is inevitable, it's sure taking its sweet time getting here...

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  17. Go up in a hot air balloon. We moved to wine country and in the spring they give rides, so I hope to report that I did it soon. (I am afraid of heights, so this will be a big "who cares")

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  18. I would write a book. I'm not failing am I?

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  19. I'd definitely keep writing. But I'm going to do that anyway. :0)

    Have a great day, Tabitha!

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  20. There is only one desire in my life: to do whatever it takes to be Happy.

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  21. I would "heal" people...sounds crazy but my fear of failing keeps me from practicing and doing it.

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  22. I'd win So You Think You Can Dance! (But considering I'm too old and don't have the physical endurance anymore, I'll stick with taking classes at my local studio. :)

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  23. I'd make a CD of all the songs I've written and open the quaint, book & coffee shop that only exists in my head.
    Thanks Tabitha... now I only feel worse! :)

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  24. Hello again, Tabitha. I have given you an award. :) Please look on my blog to accept the award: http://runawaymoments.blogspot.com/2009/10/award.html

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  25. Thank you all for the comments. Funny, I have always wanted to own an art shop/gallery or book store... Hmmmm :)

    I hope you girls and guys pursue some of those dreams. Failing is not always about not been published or recognized for what you do, some times it is about not trying in the first place.

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  26. I just came over from Tira's blog, congrats on the award!

    Oh, if I could, I would quit my boring bank job and open up a shop selling stuff that I like, books, jewelry, clothes, etc. I would also love to backpack around the world! I hope I will be able to realize my dreams one day! Hope yours will come true too:)

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  27. As of yesterday, I've faced every single one of mine, until I invent new ones. I was afraid of flying so I flew to LA (13 hours) knowing that once I was on the plane, I couldn't get off and once I was in America, I'd have to fly back.

    I was afraid of confrontation and I've hereby gotten that sorted by having to have a frank "discussion" with someone I not only respect but am vaguely terrified of. But I did it. That was the hardest thing for me.

    I'm with you Tab, failing isn't about not getting what you were aiming for, it's about not aiming for it in the first place, not trying.

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  28. Oh, my, this is a tough question, Tabitha!! I'd buy land and run an equestrian center on it. Maybe even overnight camps with it. I'd love to see horses grazing in my back yard and be able to visit the stable whenever I wanted, and watch my girls enjoy every minute of being a part of it. Sadly, this requires money I don't have and am not willing to go into massive debt over when I'm not assured that it would be lucrative enough to get my girls through post-secondary education.

    I'm going to have to ask myself this question more often and see what I come up with that I could do in faith!!!

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  29. Such a hard question. I have fears. But failing is not one of them. I get energized by the attempt, and failure is just an indication to move on to something else.

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  30. The problem with that question is that sometimes you have to factor in money as well. If I knew I couldn't fail and I had the money... then I'd open a jewelry store that taught bead weaving classes. I love making jewelry, love it. But I love the intricate patterns and I adore teaching. This is not going to pay the mortgage though, so again.... it's "if I had the money" type of situation.

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  31. My husband and I would quit our jobs and move to Provence. I'd write and do writing workshops and he would do some kind of consulting work :) We'd live in a town and have a house with blue shutters, one car, and a patio with a pergola.

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