Quiet your mind for a moment with me. What is a question that summons you to be fearless? Fair, the question itself reads a wee bit cryptic, “What is the question that summons you to be fearless?” When I asked myself this question, I stayed with it for a moment and this is what I wrote.
The question the summons me to be fearless is, “can I handle more failure?” Failure beats me up for a while, it allows me to indulge my overdeveloped self-criticism muscle; it allows me to measure myself against standards that probably weren’t fair to begin with. I don’t like it, but can I handle more—of course I can.
Double false starting at the World Championships in 1994, taking a cold medication that cost me and my team a gold medal at the Pan American Games, putting enormous amounts of time, money and passion into Play 2010 an idea to work with the Olympics to improve the health and activity levels of kids and almost succeeding, the end of my marriage, failing to ever, ever get organized… shall I continue?
Can I handle more failure? I already know the answer. Of course, don’t like it, and aI don't want it -- but it seems to come naturally with this business called living. And the more truly engaged you are in that living, the more failure you ultimately experience. So knowing the answer to this question summons me to be fearless, which I do not define as the absence of fear, but courage in the face of fear. If can handle more failure, than I can take more risks. If I can handle more failure, I can continue to live deeply and boldly, and know that whatever failures and disappointments come along the way, I can handle them.
I encourage you to sit for a moment and listen to that internal chatter and ask yourself the question. "What is the question that summons YOU to be fearless?" You'll discover so much about yourself after asking it and so much more about your upcoming journey after answering it.