You know how sometimes you get a gut feeling that you need to make a certain decision? And then you make the decision (which is kind of a big deal because you’re not normally a very decisive person...and that’s putting it mildly) and you instantly feel that overwhelming sense of freedom and accomplishment.

And then over the next few days you feel the huge weight of people looking at you like, “What on earth were you thinking?” And suddenly all that joy and happiness and fresh air go rushing right back out the door…

I just wish that the best decision for me was always the best decision for everyone else in my life.

But the truth of the matter is that asking for that is asking for something that doesn’t exist. There’s simply too many people in each of our lives for any one decision we make to receive unanimous approval. And that just sucks.

Because the last thing any of us wants is for hard feelings to develop between ourselves and someone we love dearly, or to feel like we are seen as less than competent or discerning to any of our friends or family members. But regardless of efforts on both sides, that’s just inevitably what happens.

That’s the issue with change. Every decision we make changes the dynamics of our lives, and our relationships are no exception. I think what we miss, however, is that the change isn’t always a bad thing, and it’s rarely permanent. Change happens and we adapt. All of us. Together.

Change also causes us to doubt. And doubt can be really self-destructive. It creates an environment in which my insecurities and fears flourish.

But it is incredibly helpful to be able to evaluate those doubts, and to thereby discern what power you are going to give them in your life. In other words, I ask myself, “Are these doubts legitimate and require action, or am I letting them consume me when I shouldn’t?” And to answer that question, I must first come to an understanding of what is causing the doubt? Is it a fear of what others think of me? Because if so, I can guarantee there is little to no legitimacy behind it.

The other night, I was panicking as I tried to fall asleep during my first night alone with a new dog and my husband out of town. Our time at my parent’s house earlier that day did not go spectacularly, and I had a lot of doubts about how I was going to make it work. But at 1:30 it hit me. I was going to have to make it work. I was going to have to change up my routine around the house so that I could feel good about being able to keep up on cleaning, and cooking, and laundry, and feeding animals, etc. And at that moment, I also hopped out of bed to promptly water and feed all of our animals so that the only things I would have to worry about in the morning were Olivia and the new dog. And that’s what I did and the next day went splendidly!

The moral of my little anecdote is this: we can’t let doubt get us stocked up. We can’t use it as an excuse to not move forward, just because we’re being pushed outside our comfort zone. We can’t let doubt keep us from doing the things we need to or making the decisions we need to, just because somebody else may not agree.

So, this week, as we clean out our houses and clean out our yards and clean out all the things we need to in order to prepare for the glory of spring and summer, why don’t we clean out the doubt while we’re at it?