'What are you so afraid of?' I was asked, casually one evening. The lights were dimmed, and I had a pair of all-knowing eyes burrowing into mine, desperately searching for an answer. For a way in.
'But if you never try, you'll never know.'
Ah, I thought, the classic response.
Of course, it's correct. If you don't attempt something, there's a very slim chance of knowing what the outcome would've been 100% certainly.
And that terrifies me.
I like being in control. Of having an extremely good chance of weighing up what will come next, the potential outcomes, and then planning for them. But for some things in life, there's no way of knowing.
You can either dive in head first with nothing more than blind faith, hopeful for the outcome you truly desire.
Or, you can choose not to go after it, and always wonder what might have happened.
For far too long now, I've chosen option two.
I've always being too scared to let my guard down and show a side of vulnerability only a minute selection of people ever see. Once I've been hurt by someone or something, it's always taken me a long time to recover and allow myself to repeat the process again with the risk of experiencing the same disappointment.
However, at the start of 2015, I made a promise to myself. It wasn't your classic resolution of a set goal with defined ways of reaching it. It was simply an internal promise to do better.
Or at least to try to.
To make an attempt at not being too afraid to go after the things I want. Even though they're likely to be the same things that scare me the most.
And so, in the past two months I've consciously made that change.
And oddly enough, all things considered, it's paid off better than I could ever have imagined.
I applied for Masters courses in London, the city I've said for many years I wish to live in one day. Even if it's only for a short while, I long for that to be a chapter in my life.
And I got in.
I've actually been offered a place to study, and as long as I can financially sort everything, come September, Coventry may not be my home anymore.
And that terrifies and excites me in equal amounts.
But, I'm choosing to focus on the excitement, and not let my fears alter anything.
In other situations, however, promising myself to face my biggest fears hasn't paid off in the way I hoped. This month has seen a rollercoaster of emotion. I've been overwhelmed by dramas both academically with the amount of work I have right now, and very much so socially. Events have transpired that could so easily have made me run kicking and screaming in tears back to the older version of me that never let people in.
'You were right!' she'd scream. 'Why did I ever try and go against you?!'
But, she's not.
That older version of myself was stunting her growth. As cliched as it is, each failure should propel you forward with the urgency to create positivity, not to cling on to what is lost. Yes, I've been hurt a lot in the past few weeks. I allowed myself to do the thing that scares me the most and become vulnerable, and it backfired somewhat magnificently.
But that's okay.
It isn't going to stop me from standing up, dusting myself off, and trying again.
And by writing this tonight, I'm making both an outward and inward promise to myself to not let this tiny set-back, because that's all it will feel like eventually, just tiny, stop me from doing it again one day.
Things may seem upsetting, intimidating and overwhelming right now, but I know that in time they'll get better. And oh my, am I going to be stronger because of it.