Saturday, January 3, 2009

Shoot for the Moon

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After reading my post about attempting to live happily in the moment, my friend Carolyn Howard-Johnson asked me to talk about regrets. Okay, so some Elvis Presley lyrics come to mind..."Regrets, I've had a few."

Interestingly, I can't think of specifics at this writing. But I can talk in generalities. I regret that for so many years I allowed fear to stop me or slow down my progress.

I used to be afraid of much—mostly the opinions of others. Oh and yes, speaking in public was another one, which included articulating my opinions or ideas. My body had an intense reaction to being in front of others (uncontrollable shaking, rapid heart beat, wobbly voice, scrambled brain) and so I avoided it.

Today, I encourage you to think about what stops you from shooting for your moon. In 2000, I took care of one of my fears and joined Toastmasters. Since then, many of my other fears—the debilitating ones...the ones that stopped me from being proactive—have melted away.

Start with one. I think you'll be surprised how far the first step takes you!

Allyn Evans
allyn at


Carolyn Howard-Johnson said...

Well, glad to see I got you started on this, Allyn. And that you did got me to thinking a bit more. I think my only regret is letting life and our culture (you know, the "children and husuband first" of the 50s and 60s) dissuade me from creative writing for years. On the other hand the thinking part of me tells me that I wouldn't/couldn't have been the same writer then than I am now. So, examining regrets CAN be valuable! (-:

Carolyn Howard-Johnson
Multi award-winning novelist, poet and author of the HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers

Beth Blair said...

I love learning from you ladies.

I'm really trying to catch my regrets now. I'm in the process of overcoming those same fears, Allyn (thank you so much for the support! It's going great!).

Prill Boyle said...

I've worked through some of the same fears as you, Allyn. Toastmasters is great. People always say I'm a natural speaker, but I've worked hard at it.

In terms of regrets, I've got a bunch. But of course, if I hadn't made the choices I did, I wouldn't be the person I am today. The good news is that I'm still learning, still growing; and my so-called mistakes have taught me to be more forgiving of others.

Allyn Evans said...

Carolyn, I agree about the "letting life and our culture" get in the way. Those "regrets" were what pushed me to write Grab the Queen Power. And you are also right...without the experiences, I wouldn't be who I am now. day I plan to see all three of you speak, maybe not together. :) I just need to head in your direction.

Frankie, the Walk 'N Roll Dog said...

What a powerful post, Allyn. I too lived for so many years worrying about what others thought... or what they thought best for me. I NEVER imagined myself being a public speaker. But once my passion found me that was all I needed to overcome my fear.
I have had regrets, but I think they have made me stronger and more determined to not let anything get in my way that I now want. So regrets are not always bad things.
Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this... it is a good reminder to go after life with all we got!
Barbara Techel
Author of Frankie, the Walk 'N Roll Dog

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Kudos for joining Toastmasters and overcoming that fear! It's a big hinderance for so many people.

The regret that comes to mind first is that I began with fiction rather than non-fiction. Then again, perhaps I am now better prepared for my upcoming release. Time will tell!

Allyn Evans said...

Good luck with the new release, Diane! I'm still a work in progress on number two. So ready to complete the first draft. :)

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