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Confusion. Dressed In A Fear Suit. And You Already Know What To Do.

I don’t know what it is, but lately everyone seems to be “confused.”

“Do I do this thing or that thing?”
“Should I take that trip or not take the trip?”
“Should I get into (whatever) job (I hate) or should I pursue my beloved creative endeavors?”
“Should I break up with my boyfriend or try to make it work?”
“Should I quit now or quit later?”

And then.

“I’m just so confused.”

And it’s so funny because as I was talking to all these confused people all week, it turned out that they weren’t really confused at all. They all knew what they wanted, what was the “right” step, they knew the answer deep down, but they were having trouble accepting it…because it felt like the harder thing to do. They KNEW which way to go, but for one reason or the other, it felt like a tough decision, so they created “confusion” around it. And clung on to that “confusion” for dear life, using IT as the reason they couldn’t make that tough decision. You follow?

This happened to me this week as I was G-chatting with a dear coach friend of mine. My “confusion” was about a hunting trip. In Montana. In September. All by myself. Now…if you’ve been reading my blog at all since last year, this would seem like a no brainer. I mean a hunting trip in one of my favorite states in the country, fly-fishing, shotgun-shooting, quad-riding, horseback riding, gourmet/healthy food trip would seem like such a “Sally” trip. So much so that I actually felt like I might have manifested this trip to a T. But, although it’s everything I’ve been wanting, everything I’ve been loving, many activities that are on my bucket list, I still freaked out, and couldn’t make a decision. Even though I had the event website up on my tabs bar for two weeks, I couldn’t hit “buy.”

“I’m confused” I said. About what to do. “Do I really want to go?” “That’s a lot of money.” “What if I hate it?”

And the more I got coached and the more I looked inside, I realized I wasn’t actually confused at all. Confusion was not the emotion. It was fear…dressed in confusion’s clothing. It’s me creating chaos and drama to distract me from the fact that I already knew what I wanted, it was just that I was scared of it. Scared that I’d hate it. Scared that I’d love it. Scared that I wouldn’t be any good at it and feel embarrassed. Scared that I’d find out that this identity I’ve built for myself (rockstar cowgirl sharp shooter) isn’t actually who I am, and I’d feel like a liar, and then feel lost. Scared that the people on the trip would be lame and I’d be stuck with them. Scared of spending that much money on something that doesn’t “further my career or personal growth” (technically). And ultimately, scared that I wasn’t going to be good enough.
Confusion wasn’t confusion. Confusion was my way of skirting a tough decision. One that (I think) will grow me, push my boundaries, and have me way out of my comfort zone, and have me face something I’ve been needing to face anyway. Deep down, my body knew all this.

I’ve thought this for a long time, but now I know it to be true. If you’re finding yourself “confused,” there is something inside you, your heart, your gut, your soul, that you KNOW. You know what’s best for you. You know the answers. You KNOW whether or not the guy you’re with is right for you. You KNOW whether or not you should leave your job. There’s a knowingness that you have about living your life of greatest fulfillment. You know what you want, deep down, you’re just afraid to accept this knowledge. You’re afraid to let yourself have it. You may have a decision you need to make, and the choice is not the point (because you already know the right one). The point is making the commitment to yourself to have the exact kind of life that you want. You see…we bring challenges into our lives to help grow us. The closer you are to your fulfillment, the bigger the challenges will feel.

So if you’re finding yourself “confused” or finding yourself needing to make a choice, remember that you know the answer already, it’s just a matter of having the courage to stand up for your best life. There ARE other fish in the sea. You CAN make money doing what you love. Where you’re living right now will be here if you decide that you hate the new place you move to.

And once you commit to your great life, amazing things will open up for you. Things you can’t possibly even dream up right now. And you only know this in retrospect. I know it’s scary, standing on this cliff, wondering what will happen when you jump. Imagining how scary it must be to fly. But once you decide that flying is what you’re meant to do, the jump will feel exciting, even amongst the scary moments. So go ahead. Jump. Make the decision. Buy the trip. Leave the relationship. Quit the job.

You already know what to do.

And with that being said…I bought the ticket. I’m going on the hunting trip. Driving out to Montana all by myself, camping along the way.

We’ll see how it goes. Undoubtedly…I’ll learn some things about myself.

What about you? What tough decision have you been skirting lately? What is it that you’re finding yourself confused about? Leave a comment on the blog. You’re not alone.

And if you’re not sure…try this:
(Because what would an awesome lesson be without some homework? Let’s make it fun.
Here’s something you can do if you’re finding yourself “confused”:

1) Get out a piece of paper and write down every single thing you’re feeling confused about.
2) Ask yourself…”What is it that I KNOW to be true?”
3) Then ask yourself…”If I believed that it was ok to have what I want…what would I do right now?”
4) Reflect. There are answers in these questions. What you do with them is the important part.
5) Share. Leave a comment on this blog with what you’ve discovered.

If you like what you saw here, make sure you get on my mailing list so I can tell you when new posts are up and when cool stuff happen. Click here to get on the list. No spam or anything lame. Promise. And if you really like what you saw here…sign up for a free coaching consultation. I can’t tell you specifically what will change for you (since everyone is different), but I can tell you that your life will be infinitely better in a way you’re not expecting. Click here to try it out. For free. Also, love you.

29 Responses to Confusion. Dressed In A Fear Suit. And You Already Know What To Do.

  1. Dr.Samantha says:

    “It was fear…dressed in confusion’s clothing.” I LOVE this. So true!

    • Sallyhope says:

      So glad you like it lady! What resonated with you the most?? You been having a poorly dressed emotional situation? :)

  2. Tammy Swales says:

    You are SO right. I LOVE the way you describe this emotion. It’s making me think about what big decision I’m skirting right now (I’m scared to think there are several! ::grin::) GREAT post! Totally inspired! Tam

    • Sallyhope says:

      Hey Tammy…I’m so glad it resonated with you. And I totally hear you. The reason we don’t usually look at this stuff is because then we’ll feel obligated to DO something about it. Tricky tricky, eh. So that’s why we create the confusion in the first place. But you got it. You know what to do already. Let me know how I can support you in all this! Also, I checked out your website and it’s AWESOME. I love your branding and the words you use. Very cool and different for a photographer. Heck yes!

  3. A hunting trip in Montana sounds awesome! This is a great post and one that really resonates with me! I’m currently undergoing a metamorphis into the person that I’m supposed to be – and that is reflecting in my business too. For so long I was confused. I wasn’t having as much success as I knew was possible. I didn’t get how to teach what I was really here to teach. Heck – I didn’t really know what that was until a few weeks ago! So much personal growth tells us to take action – and that’s what I was doing. But in doing so I forgot to become still go within and find the answers that I ALREADY KNEW to everything.

    • Sallyhope says:

      What an amazing transformation time for you lady!! And CONGRATS!!! Finding some answers (within) of course…or at least a calmness about what’s inside is such a milestone, methinks. I cannot wait to see what you create. And I want to know more! Message me!!

  4. Sallyhope:

    Thank you for reminding me that I know the answer already and the answer does go down the road that is hilly as opposed to flat and smooth. Now I know what I have to do. Thanks for kicking me in my Tushy!

    • Sallyhope says:

      Anytime Maureen!! I’m very curious what the hilly road is. And by the way…aren’t hills waaaaay more beautiful and interesting to look at than a flat terrain? I mean, have you ever driven through Kansas!? :)

  5. Michael says:

    I know about the fear and the confusion. But when I think about it as you frame it today, I know what real fear is, I have experienced it. I also know that confused feeling. Right now for me it isn’t so much about the decisions I need ot make, I have already made a ton and started in the direction I want. Somehow it is more like confusion on the trail, not at the trailhead (to go with your hiking theme). I am really at Point 4 on yur list and anxious to move on.

    • Sallyhope says:

      Ooooh what an exciting place to be…point 4. Sounds like you have a lot of wisdom around this. That you have a lot of self-awareness. That is so important I think. Perhaps one of the most important things. Thank you so much for sharing.

      • Michael says:

        Am I the only guy that reads Sally? Yes, Sally point 4 is tough though sometimes i tmeans pushing even more boundaries though. It means being agressive enough to make i thappen. One of my new sayings/mantras for my life is “Do what it takes!”

  6. Andrea says:

    I love this post! Thank you Sally! All last week I had to decide whether to expand even though it wasn’t in the ‘way I wanted.’ I decided to stick to my goals but I proposed another option that would suite me better and it was accepted. It’s a first where I really went for something and asked for what would work for me instead of accepting a full yes, trying to make it work, or a full no and regretting and wishing it was different. I think this post will help many find their clarity and I’m so glad you went for yours ;-)

    • Sallyhope says:

      Hey Andrea! WOW!! Congrats!! It’s so amazing when we realize we are cause over our lives and situations instead of effect. So happy for you that you negotiated a situation that works. What a powerful lesson. HECK YES LADY!!!!!!

  7. You know what? This is the 4th time today that I’ve heard this message (I wish I could underline, bold, italicize and otherwise emphasize the 4th in that sentence). I heard it once within my own self this morning. Once through a video I watched on someone’s blog shortly after that. Once through Marie Forleo’s latest video blog post that I just finished checking out. And once now through your post. I get it :). A quote that was shared in Marie’s video fits here: “Everyone has oceans to fly if they have a heart. Is it reckless? Yes. But what do dreams know of boundaries?” ~ Amelia Earhart

  8. Is Fear dressed in Confusion’s clothing anything like cross dressing?

  9. Jan Brown says:

    Great post Sally. I have found this to be so true in my own life. When I say I am confused, it’s really because I don’t want to face what I already know to be true. Got to face it head on baby and quit the confusion game. thanks for a great post!

    • Sallyhope says:

      THank you so much Jan! And you’re so right. Us humans are so funny how we create all this stuff for ourselves as blockers to what we really want. Kind of ridiculous system if you think about it. Thank you for reading and for sharing!

  10. Lisa C. says:

    OMG…I LAUGHED all the way through this post, Sally. It’s just…so…true! My favorite part was this <<>>.

    Dig this…I recently left my career of 32 years to make a hard left and go into the culinary world. Right after being laid off, I wrestled with spending SEVERAL hundred dollars on culinary school. But I held my nose & wrote the check! Not only did I do it, LOVE it, and told that I had talent, but…are you ready for this?…am now dating the teacher/head chef at the school! Tell me about “career and personal growth”!!!

    I hesitated a bit because he’s a bit older than me, but I put that “confusion” aside because I KNEW this was supposed to happen. He treats me like no other ever has and is as excited as I am about my “new career” and is happy to help. I’m rolling with ALL of it!

    In a nutshell, I say F*CK confusion! Get inside your own head, because only YOU know! xoxo

    • Sallyhope says:

      OH MY GOSH LADY!! HAHAHHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHA! Yep…we never know what will happen. All we know is we gotta follow our instincts and see what unfolds. This story is so amazing and inspirational and I hope ALL my readers see it. I’m so glad I know you and get to follow in your journey with you.


  11. Lisa C. says:

    I guess the quotes don’t turn out, so the part that didn’t show up was
    “Scared of spending that much money on something that doesn’t “further my career or personal growth”

  12. Gina Marie says:

    This post is speaking to me. One of the things I know is true for me is to leave my job. It drains my energy to the point where I don’t have any left to do anything else with. I’ve even cut it down to part time and it is still an energy killer. My gut knows what to do but my ego is extremely fearful. I feel as if they need me at my job. I fear losing relationships I built at work and being alone working at home all of the time even though that is where my heart is. It’s all kind of fear going on but I know what I need to do.

    • Sallyhope says:

      Hey Gina…girl, you’re speaking to one of the number one reasons that people stay in the wrong job or relationship for too long. They are afraid to hurt the other person. They are afriad what will happen when you leave. And because humans are compassionate beings, knowingly hurting someone else is like the worst thing we can all possibly imagine. But then it’s so weird because what are we really doing by staying there?? Hurting ourselves. And whose life are we living?? Ours. AND, it’s also so easy to project feelings onto someone else. Assume we know what our leaving will do for them. One of my coach friends always says that we can’t take responsibility for someone elses feelings and reactions, but only our own. And it’s so true. Each person has a path and lessons they need to learn. You leaving is one of them. YOU CAN DO IT!! And your life will be amazing because of it. Let me know how it all goes.

  13. Rebecca says:

    I can so relate to this! I was nodding along as I read your words. It’s so true – we always know what to do, deep down. But fear prevents us from taking action. This was evident for me recently before I took the plunge, quit my job and signed up for B-School. I knew it was the right thing to do, but I was scared. What will I do for money? What if B-School turns out to be a sham (it so isn’t!)? What if my business fails and I fall flat on my face? But you know, I’d never have found out the answers to these questions, or how silly my fear was, if I didn’t try.

    • Sallyhope says:

      Oh girl…I TOTALLY understand and I felt that same way about B-School three years ago. It’s so funny though, once we do the thing that our gut is telling us to do, that place of truth inside, more amazing things than previously imagined happened. And you’re so right…all these things are made up stories in our heads until we try. Congrats for pushing through and I cannot wait to see what shows up for you. Up up and away!

  14. Tad says:

    I love this post.

    i’ve never thought of confusion in this way before.

    when i feel confused I’ve noticed that it’s usually a sign i am moving way too fast and I need to slow down, get still and really feel inside to where I am and get PRESENT to that. i need to talk things out with a friend and be heard, have someone really do their best to ‘get’ me. and then i find i’m clear about everything but i’ve also probably felt ashamed about feeling those things.

    ashamed of what i want.
    ashamed of what i need.
    ashamed of what i’ve done.

    and when i’m in shame i can’t be real. i can’t be honest.

    and then it’s a shitshow. because then i’m still trying to get whatever my agenda is – the thing i’m secretly clear about – but it’s now a hidden agenda (sometimes even to me). and now i’m going to manipulate, angle etc because i’m scared of the only two things we’re ever scared about – that i’ll lose something i have or that i won’t get what i (secretly) want.

    i think this is so at the heart of things wanting things that we tell ourselves we shouldn’t want. but when we can be real about what we really want and get okay with that so much opens up in our lives. we become more authentic. relaxed. comfortable in our own skin. our presence becomes liberating and refreshing for others because, around us, they can admit what they secretly want to.

    until we do that we feel shame which creates fear which we cover with confusion.

    so brilliant sally. i’ve really never thought of it all this way.

    I think you’d love this piece too:

    • Sallyhope says:

      Yes! This.

      “the only two things we’re ever scared about – that i’ll lose something i have or that i won’t get what i (secretly) want.”

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