015: Doing the Things We Love Despite Our Fears of Messing Up (Adventure Episode)


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Changing where we get our sense of value from, and doing the things we love.

Being afraid to make mistakes can keep us from taking action on things we want to create, the places we want to explore and the people we’d like to connect with.

Knowing that we can generate our own sense of value and that our value is constant no matter how many mistakes we make can help us move forward into the world unrestricted by the fear we could mess things up.

In the first Adventure Episode of the podcast, I ride towards a lighthouse on Rottnest Island and take a look at the dynamics of this fear and share some of the techniques I’ve found helpful in re-discovering my inner-value which remains unchangeable by any external circumstance.

Show Highlights and Takeaways

Making Mistakes

  • We aren’t afraid of making the mistake itself (messing up our lines, getting the answer wrong, etc.)
  • We are afraid of our value decreasing once we’ve made the mistake.
  • It is not possible to go through life and not make a mistake.
  • We learn from making mistakes.
  • We don’t grow and learn through perfection, we learn through messing up.

We Were Told That Our Value Can Change

  • We grew up being told that our value is determined by the things outside us – praise, success, material possessions.
  • We think our value is changeable depending on our failures and successes, and the judgements of others.
  • We have been conditioned to think that we are of less value, broken, stupid or faulty when we make a mistake.

Looking to External Sources for Validation

  • There’s nothing inherently bad about receiving external validation. It’s nice to be acknowledged by others.
  • But when our primary means of defining our sense of value comes from outside of us, then we will only take action that keeps this validation coming, and not take action on the things which may decrease or stop this validation.

Breaking the Cycle of External Validation

  • Our fear of making mistakes will continue to be there for as long as we look to external forms of validation as our primary way of feeling good.
  • Deriving our own sense of value from inside ourselves allows us to step out into the world regardless of the mistakes we might make as we know that whatever happens, good or bad, the results aren’t a reflection of our inner value.
  • Becoming aware of the actual consequences of making a mistake can make us aware of the reality of the situation, and show us our fears of the unrealistic consequences we think might occur.
  • We can ask: What are the actual consequences going to be if I mess this up?

Coming Back to Our Natural State

  • We are unique and ultimately incomparable with any other thing.
  • If we feel less valuable, then we will feel less valuable. However, this feeling has no affect on our fundamental value, on our fundamental uniqueness.
  • When we experience our inner-value for ourselves (not intellectually but directly), we know that no mistake can ever decrease our worthiness.
  • Spending time in nature can remind us of this natural state which is not determined by external conditions.
  • By becoming aware of all the parts that make us up (our hair, our skin, our bones, muscles, eyes, thoughts, feelings) and then asking ourselves: Where is it that my sense of value is located?

The First Adventure Episode – What Did You Think?

Is there something you think I could improve on? Let me know! I would be glad to hear from you. Being the first of its kind it felt a little rough. I learned a few things like, it’s really hard riding at full speed and trying to remember everything you wanted to say! And also it’s hard to concentrate when you’re surrounded by trees.

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The Podcast

The B is for Being Podcast is a collection of conversations with friends, psychologists, and thought-leaders on the most effective tools for uncovering authentic expression and navigating the obstacles we may encounter on the way to discovering ourselves.

About Benjamin

Hi, I’m Benjamin. I podcast and blog about authentic expression and self-discovery. I also make slow-videos for rest and reflection. You can read more about me here.

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