Who Told You You Weren’t Brave?

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I ran into a friend from college at Starbucks while I was home.

A friend who is too sweet to handle, loves really well and went to Zambia for 3 solid months, and she’s a beast at nursing.

Yet she told me that she thought I was so brave to move all the way out to California by myself.

And I wanted to shake her and tell her with as much love and passion as I could that in no way am I brave- especially compared to her.

Now please hear me: I so so so so so appreciate everyone who has supported me and loved me and totally encouraged me as I have taken this literal leap of faith across the country. I am so humbled by every single person who gives me more credit for taking that risk than I ever could deserve.

But please know that I am not brave. I am not a risk-taker who is living a glorious life on the west coast. I do not have more faith in myself/trust myself better than you.

I am not braver than you.

I am not anything more than you.

I am just me.

Just an awkward, goofy, highly emotional-too obsessed with airports and cacti-kinda girl.

I am stinking normal, and so are you.

But that doesn’t mean normal can’t be brave.

That doesn’t mean that normal can’t take a risk, buy a new computer for the heck of it, or spend too much money on a memory or drive 2 hours just to meet a friend for coffee.

Just because you didn’t move across the country doesn’t mean you are a failure.

Just because you stayed in your hometown after college or are nannying full-time after graduating a whole semester early or living in your parent’s basement after 4 years in nursing school, doesn’t mean that you aren’t brave.
That you aren’t living your life.
That you don’t measure up to that person who got that full-time job and travels for a living (not me, just someone I have caught myself measuring myself up against.)

Being brave and taking a risk isn’t just for those few people whose lives look good on social media- it’s for you too.

And taking risks starts with little yet big baby steps.

Little big baby steps that hurt like hell. Lets be honest.

Because what you guys don’t know is that I have had a whole team backing me as I thought through what I wanted to do with my life after college. I took many many many little big baby steps that lead me to my big decision to move across the country.

I took 4 steps forward and 5 steps back almost every day.

I went to a counselor every two weeks or so.

I cried to my mom about my life choices more than I can count.

I questioned, I bargained, I doubted, I cried- a lot.

I took 7 months to learn about myself, learn my dreams, and made the decision to follow them.

I took time to figure it out, and it wasn’t easy.

It wasn’t easy, but I knew what my Heavenly Father was calling me to, and I had to keep moving, even if none of those moves made sense to the world.

And even after making that big decision to move to Southern California, I still am needing to take little big baby steps. I am still figuring out my life.

So the reason I am writing this?

Because I want you to stop saying you wish you could do something ‘crazy’ and
just do it. 

Because I want you to believe and know that you are brave, too.

Please stop telling me I am brave, and please see yourself as the wonderful, brave, strong person that you are, and do what you have been wanting to do.

Do what you think about as you lay your head down at night.

Do your dreams because you can.

I am nothing special. Nothing even close to it.

Please see that you can do it too, but it takes time. It takes steps that may seem so little yet are steps that are so incredibly vital to the process. It takes big decisions, it takes more prayer than you want, and it takes guts to take just one tiny step.

But I know you can do it.

And then remember that the journey isn’t over once you’ve taken the risk. My tears didn’t stop, my questions still linger, but my hope and faith in our God and myself grew 100x more because of those tiny steps.

So pick up your boot straps, write out your dreams and take the first step you need to in order to make those dreams a reality.

And dream big, because that is the only way to dream.

And luckily my good friend Jordan has a whole entire series on this, taking you step by step in how the heck to even take on adult life and take that “risk” you’ve dreamt of taking all your life.

Oh- and I am always open for a new roommate.

See ya soon,

Stephanie Lynn

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