Break Free


By Refuge Intern, Rachel Bollinger

break freeWe live in a world of fast pace living, and a lot of pressures. Pressure to do things right, be the best, and never fail at what you’re trying to accomplish. It’s exhausting to say the least. Always comparing yourself to someone else in fear that you might not measure up, or even worse, fail and everyone is there to see you fall. I can personally attest to this in my life in many areas, but especially growing up as an athlete and playing collegiate basketball. Don’t get me wrong, I fully support a life of athletics and would never in a million years think to do anything different in my life regarding that. However, a lot of people, including myself, don’t think about the psychological warfare that accompanies playing a sport. It wasn’t until after I took a step back, which is really just a more eloquent way of saying I got too old and was forced to retire, that I realized how much I was driven by being the best, not failing, and certainly not letting anyone see me fail. I was powered by my fear of letting others see me fall, and experiencing the embarrassment and shame that I knew would shortly follow.

I know I’m not alone in this feeling. Maybe the area of your life that you experience this in is with work, being a parent, starting something new, or in your relationships. But what if instead of thinking, “I don’t measure up” or “Why try, I know I’m just going to fail anyway” we fully embrace who we are and break free from the fears that control us. Brené Brown speaks about this as wholehearted living in her book Daring Greatly. She says, “Wholehearted living is about engaging in our lives from a place of worthiness. It means cultivating the courage, compassion, and connection to wake up in the morning and think, “No matter what gets done and how much is left undone, I am enough.” You are enough. What powerful words to tell yourself. And the most amazing part about those words is that they’re 100 percent true! God has shaped you and formed you in his image. He has made you so uniquely special, full of amazing qualities that make you who you are, and no one else. Embrace yourself and know that you are enough. Fail or succeed, win or lose, pass or fail, you are enough! Do what makes you happy and break free from the pressures in the world that say you have to be the best. Sometimes just trying, and accepting who you are no matter the outcome, is the most daring achievement you could ever obtain.

“Who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, and least he fails while daring greatly…”   -Theodore Roosevelt

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