I don’t think I dreamed big enough when I was a kid. I didn’t really know all of the opportunities that were out there. When I did Dancing With the Stars, it represented a new page in my life because it wasn’t like anything I’d ever done. It changed me. Same with being on The View—I never thought I would cohost a talk show. I’m always up for a challenge because I like seeing what I’m capable of.
As I continue to leap out of my comfort zone and say yes to new opportunities, the world has become incredibly exciting to me. I love that I can look back and say, “Wow, I never dreamed I would be a producer, an author or talk show host, and I’ve done those things!” I hope I can continue to do them.
But pushing yourself out of your comfort zone is hard. Finding a way to expand your horizons while staying true to yourself can be really challenging. Here’s my advice to people who are having trouble toeing that line.
1. Don’t let fear hold you back
This sounds really simple, but you have to say to yourself, “Yes, I’m going to try this,” and actually be willing to do it. Something that helped me is realizing I’ve succeeded more often than I’ve failed. And really, what’s the worst that can happen? I tell my kids this all the time: “So what if you mess up? Who cares? You still get another day to try again.”
I had so much fear about my live performances on Dancing With the Stars that sometimes I would forget my steps, even though I knew them well. It didn’t matter that I got a 7 on a routine when maybe I should have gotten a 10. At least I went out there and tried. When you get past your fears, you can really be ready to try new things and gain those great character-building experiences.
2. Establish your boundaries
Once you’re committed to trying something new, it’s important to set up boundaries right off the bat. Because if you don’t have any boundaries, that’s when you risk being pulled in the wrong direction. Ask yourself what your limits are. For example, if you’re going to take a new job but don’t want to drastically cut into your time with family, you might establish up front that you can’t work past a certain time. Then, if the job starts to demand later hours, you have that framework already in place to help you pause and reprioritize.
3. Don’t bow to outside pressure
There are a lot of people out there who might expect you to uphold their standards, rather than your own. I’m very outspoken about my Christian faith, and I actually face a lot of pressure from others within the faith. When I was on Dancing With the Stars, for example, I was constantly hearing from people who thought that my costumes weren’t appropriate. On Fuller House, people were sad that my character made certain choices. Even with The View, people say I’m not speaking up enough for conservative values and that I allow myself to get walked on. Everyone has an opinion!
I’ve found that people really do respect when you hold true to your convictions and what you value. So you just have to learn to let the comments go and not take them personally, even if they’re well-intentioned. When I’m having issues or facing a big decision I’m unsure about, I talk with the people who are closest to me, whom I trust and who know my situation. That’s where I seek guidance, along with prayer, not from the masses.
4. Strive for positivity
Attitude is everything. It’s always going to get hard at some point. You have to find the joy in whatever you’re doing and come out the other side.
There were some weeks on Dancing With the Stars that were so difficult that I just wanted to quit. The routines were hard, and I was so mentally and physically exhausted that I didn’t want to do anything. That’s when you have to slap that smile on your face and change your attitude. Hang in there! Your attitude is a lot of what is going to push you through.
Candace Cameron Bure is a producer, cohost of The View and an actress best known for her roles on Full House and Fuller House. She is also the author of Dancing Through Life: Steps of Courage and Conviction.