collective, Featured

on truth or dare.

January 24, 2015

facing fear. rock climbing in KY. 2012.

“Truth or Dare?”

Remember that game? I spent countless hours of my childhood, sitting in a circle with my other girlfriends, late at night, eating Doritos and playing truth or dare.

What did you pick? Did have a default answer?

Mine was DARE. Almost always I chose dare. Unless I had something that I really wanted to be forced to confess, I went for the adventure. It was dangerous and a gamble, what were they going to make me do? Run around in the snow with no shoes on? Chug Coke until I puked? Call my boy crush and wait till he answered before I hung up? Whatever the challenge, I typically went for it. Truth seemed like the boring choice. The safe and calculated choice. That was not how I wanted to be perceived, even as a kid.

If we were to play that game now, as adults, what would we choose?

After some thought, I’m pretty confident that I would still choose dare. I love a good adventure.

But my reasons for not choosing truth have changed. Truth seems less like the safe choice, and more like the risk now that I’ve grown up a bit. Truth isn’t boring, it is terrifying. The idea of being asked a question and having to answer absolutely 100% honest kind of freaks me out right now. Especially depending who is asking the question.

When it comes to what I value, I would say vulnerability and authenticity are at the top of my list. That is who I want to be, and it is also whom I am drawn to in relationships.

I have always been an open book. I wear my heart on my sleeve and am pretty willing to share real things that are going on in my life. I like this about me. I like that I want to be known and know others, and the best way to do that is put yourself out there. This is an ingrained part of me.

As I’ve grown into an adult, I have become less and less willing to ‘put it all out there,’ so to speak. In some ways this is rooted in getting older and hopefully a little wiser. As we grow we learn how to discern whom to trust or not. This is a hard, but necessary lesson to learn.

We need to know who our safe people are. We need to learn how to be safe people for others.

But I have to confess, part of the reason I am more hesitant now than ever before to pick truth over dare, is because of FEAR. Fear of rejection, fear of betrayal, fear of judgement, fear of isolation… crippling fear.

Am I alone in this? I want to think I’m not.

It is scary putting yourself out there. Especially the older we get and the more we are expected to look put together … it is a little terrifying to say, ‘hey! I’m kind of a hot mess sometimes, wanna be friends?’

Sometimes it is easier to play it safe. To hide. To guard. You can’t be rejected if you never tried.

But then I am drawn back to my values. And back to the person I truly believe I am supposed to be. Vulnerable and Authentic. Brene Brown says that this is the only way to live a truly wholehearted life; through vulnerability we find wholeness.

I am on a quest. A quest to push through the fear that I’ve allowed myself to put on because of hurt or disappointment; I’m determined to remain true to myself and honest with others, no matter the risk.

Please hear me, I’m not welcoming foolishness. Don’t picture me going to Starbucks and telling my regular barista all of deepest pain and secrets. Guard your hearts friends, use your discernment. But don’t use this an excuse to hide.

So, “Truth or Dare?”

I choose truth.

Today I’m choosing to share my truth that in certain aspects of my life, I live in fear. Fear of not being liked, not be accepted, and not being understood. This fear causes me to second guess almost every blog post I write. This fear causes me to replay conversations with friends after they’ve happened, wondering how I was perceived. This fear causes me to dilute myself, because I do not want to come across as too much.

So I hide, and water myself down, and I become less of who I am supposed to be every time I choose fear instead of truth.

I believe the enemy of so many good things is fear. We are less generous because we are fearful we wont have enough for ourselves. We are less ambitious because we are fearful of failure. We are less honest because we are fearful of rejection.

This year, I am working on being comfortable in my skin again, and being the best version of myself, by His grace.  I understand that I will have to face fear for the rest of my life … but I can choose how I face it! I want to look it in the face and push through to the other side.  Even if that is hard, and painful, and risky.  Living true and full is more important to me than avoiding hurt and disappointment.  I know we were created live vibrant, honest stories.  Our stories. Whatever that may be.  But if we let fear dictate our actions, we will miss out on some much goodness and richness and depth.  And isn’t that the best stuff? The stuff memories are made of …

So, please join me in truth telling and fear facing. The more of us there are, the less scary it is to embrace this journey!

facing fear. cliff jumping in costa rica. 2010.

facing fear. cliff jumping in costa rica. 2010.

1 Comment

  • Reply Rachel January 24, 2015 at 10:20 pm

    I fear tragedy. And unrealized dreams!

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