Do you ever find yourself so close to a goal you can taste it? All you have to do to achieve everything you ever dreamed of is reach out. It's there for the taking.
Yet, instead of feeling excited about the new level you know you're about to hit, you get pummeled with waves of anxiety, fear, and doubt.
Instead of racing forward and embracing the very thing you've been striving for all this time, you find yourself sinking back, searching for comfort, safety, and the certainty of the grounds you've been walking for years.
I get it, and just this past week, my client and best friend Gio went through the exact same thing.
She came into the gym annoyed with herself. She was inches from hitting the goal weight she'd been working for for the past 3 years. Her career is on the precipice of greatness. And she found herself self sabotaging instead of celebrating.
The truth is, this is perfectly normal. When you step out of your comfort zone, when you overcome every excuse you ever gave yourself, when you effectively become someone new, there is a natural instinct to hold onto your old life, and your old self, for dear life.
Part of it is out of comfort, you've gotten used to this place you've been existing in for so long that it comes easily to you, even if it isn't where you want to be anymore.
Part of it is out of fear. Once you achieve the things you want to achieve, there's the pressure to maintain it. There's the fear of losing it. There's the fear that falling from the top of the mountain will leave you shattered in a million pieces; an entirely different experience from falling from the first mile-marker.
And then part of it is you, saying good bye to a piece of yourself. In moving forward and fulfilling your potential, you are ultimately having to murder the old you that kept you playing safe but small for so long.
So what do you do? How do you move forward when every fiber of your being is fighting to hold you back from the thrilling danger and ultimate glory of becoming who you were meant to be?
This is what I told Gio:
Write a letter to yourself.
Begin with forgiveness. Forgive yourself for the self sabotage, forgive yourself for sliding back into old habits, and forgive yourself for reaching for safety when you want to reach to dare greatly. Understand and empathize with the part of you that wants to stay protected. She is like a small child, terrified of the fall from the high dive, not yet understanding the beauty of the water below.
Then thank the old you. She got you to this point. She carried you through hard times, through challenges, through ups and downs. She was who you needed to be to get to this new place of growth and expansion.
And then finally, say a loving goodbye. Tell her why you need to let her go, tell her how excited you are for this next phase of your life and yourself, and tell her you won't forget the journey you went on together.
Maybe you're reading this little journal assignment and trying not to gag. Or maybe you're reading this and fighting back tears because you know this funeral for the old you is necessary, and it's hard, and it's scary.
Either way, try it. You'll be amazed at how healing this exercise can be and how much freer you'll feel to embrace the forward momentum that's about to take wing.
And you know I love hearing your stories, and your triumphs, and your challenges. So I want to challenge you to share your experience with writing this goodbye letter on social media and tag me @katspanglerunleashed on Instagram and Facebook.