So here's the thing:

Beginnings can be exciting. But being a beginner can be hard.

It's easy to glamourise new beginnings, because frankly... who doesn't like the the idea of a fresh start? 

But up close and personal, beginnings are rarely glamourous. 

They may look like hope - but they can also taste like fear.

Sometimes, it takes courage, to take those first steps. 

And then some. 

And then, it takes grit - and grace - to keep going.

Especially when anxiety and self-doubt can make you second (third, forth) guess yourself. (Oh, hello, overthinking...) and stop you in your tracks, before you really get started.

Daring to start something new (or start over again) means:

...risking making mistakes - and then doing the patient work of learning from them.
...coming to terms with the possibility that things may not work out the way you'd hoped.
...accepting that 'failure' is always a possibility - even if you're #failingforward.

Beginnings can feel feel fragile, awkward, humbling, embarrassing, confusing - and intimidating.

Occasionally, they also feel breathtakingly brilliant.

But, in a culture where 'imposter syndrome' looms large - and where the popular (if questionable) advice is to ‘fake it till you make it’, how do you stay honest, with yourself and others - and commit to keeping it real? 

Because, integrity matters, right?

It takes courage and humility to stay focussed - to keep your mind and your heart open, to be where you are - and be all there.

When you're beginning, it often feels like there are often a whole heap of decisions to be made. Every single day.

And why does everything feel like it takes way too long? 

It can feel like there is a big gap between where you are - and where you want to be.

Especially if you have a public profile, or are seen as a leader, or some kind of expert, being a beginner can challenge you, in unexpected ways.

When the learning curve seems steep, who secretly doesn’t want to skip the whole ‘beginner’ stage? - and find a short-cut to greater clarity and comfort - to a sense of expertise and mastery?

But here’s the truth: Beginnings are good for us. 

In a world where all of us still have so much to learn, beginnings have a lot to teach those of us who are willing to take our courage in both hands - and show up.

Being willing to be a beginner can be transformational.

And what I'm learning, right now - is that faith changes everything here.

Through faith, confidence comes from not from your knowledge of #allthethings - but knowing who you are - and whose you are.

Through faith, competence becomes less about about what you know (or don't) - and more about what you’re willing (or unwilling...) to learn, on the way.

Beginnings offer us a chance to grow in empathy and in compassion. To journey with other beginners - and to learn from those who are better at this thing than we are.

Beginnings offer us an invitation to embrace humility - and to lean in.

And to lean not just on ourselves - and our own understanding.

Thankfully, when you begin something new, you don't start with nothing. You get to bring who you are - and what you have. And that's something, right?

Even if there are days, when it doesn't feel like it's anything like enough. 

But, here's the thing: We don't have to go it alone. Our invitation is to play our small part, in a much bigger story.

To hand over what we have. Our five loaves and two fishes.

And here I am, showing up with mine.

Are you beginning something new this summer? Me too. So, here's an invitation:

Midsummer30 starts on Monday 18 June.

Midsummer30 is a free 30 day online community, for anyone who wants to work on something that matters. More details here.

Beginners welcome.  

© 2018 Sarah Phillips, Away Coaching
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