I DID IT ANYWAY!
If anyone had told me that 15 years ago that I would be not only organizing a conference but be standing in front of almost 100 people giving a speech, I would have laughed at them as I would have rather crawled under a table. This is what I did a few weeks ago.
I am 58 years old and my story goes back many years when I was a 'people pleaser' with little confidence and no sense of direction or aspiration. My turning point came when my husband decided after 23 years to 'do his own thing' with my best friend and left me feeling devastated with my self esteem at rock bottom at a time when my sons were growing up and '‘fleeing the nest'. I experienced a deep sense of loss and bereavement all round.
After being counselled myself, I decided I also wanted to help people and enrolled on a counselling course at which a fellow student recommended Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway. This set me on a path that has been transforming over the years as I have studied, read and absorbed so much on self development and it has all helped me to find who I was as a person and not someone's wife or mother.
I went on to gain an adult tutor qualification and became passionate about helping others with their personal development and raising aspirations through confidence building and assertiveness. Life coaching came next and, as well as gaining a diploma, I have recently worked with Dawn Breslin who specializes in confidence and self esteem. Because of the nature of a couple of jobs I have had, I began to deliver training on self harm and unfortunately this is the subject I get asked to speak about the most.
Almost two years ago after attending a conference on this topic many miles from where I live, I decided it was time something similar was put on in the area where I live (they are usually in big cities) and that I would have to be the one to organize it.Scary! This was well outside my comfort zone even though my confidence had grown steadily over the intervening years. This was largely due to my own determination but also the support and encouragement of my current husband, who is an absolute tower of strength to me and encourages and supports me in everything I do. With the help of the local college and a friend, my dream became reality a few weeks ago and I still have to pinch myself that I have done it. It was such a tremendous feeling to know I 'felt the fear and did it anyway'. I felt so proud of myself. There’s no way that I would ever have attempted anything so challenging at one time, so I will be forever grateful to Susan for starting me off on an amazing journey.
Jan, Lincolnshire, UK