Fearless I Am Not
(or how I fear less)
Trying to be a bit serious today, sorry-not-sorry. I want to go back to something I mentioned in Age is but a Number, where I say: ‘A funny thing I learned while growing in my faith is that fear is actually not the opposite of courage. It is the opposite of Love.’ and ; ‘Fear is what is mostly keeping people from acting and living by their feelings, intuition or as we would say, our faith.’ Hoping to dig a little deeper today.
Next to the above, I believe fear is the opposite of Faith. And though you might understand where my faith lies, you can apply it to your own life in different ways. Try to look more closely as to what fear does to you, to your loved ones and ultimately, to your life. It’s no rocket science, to figure out, that fear is the one thing that will keep us from chasing our dreams, reaching beyond our limitations, believing in ourselves. Fear is mostly caused by our insecurities: afraid of failing, afraid of what others will say and a lack of trust, if even only in yourself. Having a smart mouth never fails to cover for me though.
Unfortunately it doesn’t stop there: our fear for the people around us and the choices they make, will have the same effect on them! We tend to project our own insecurities and doubts on them, but just because we might not have the faith – ah, there it is – in our abilities, doesn’t mean we should discourage others to go and live their lives the way they wish to. And No, that doesn’t mean they can club those annoying neighbors over the head for spreading these awful smells while cooking.
I could compare it to the way we raised our kids. As parents we tend to be overprotective. Though sometimes this is perfectly warranted, other times it does more damage than good. We’ve always tried to raise the children in a way, they would grow to understand their own choices and the consequences, step by step. It’s impossible to keep your children / loved ones, away from the world. This might be mandatory when they’re still in diapers / toddlers, but there will be a point, they have to go out into the world and live their life and learn. Assuming they will eventually leave the whole diaper period behind and not go back there while gaming their life away.
Living in a cramp, because we’re too afraid some harm will come to them, doesn’t do anybody any good. Makes sense right? I know, in real life it’s not always as easy as it sounds. We wouldn’t be good caretakers if we did not at least TRY to protect them from whatever harm they could meet. But they have to grow and learn and unfortunately learning comes from making mistakes. Well, let’s hope it does 😉 When our fear overtakes us, it could severely limit their growth and their sense of self-worth and self-confidence. We need to prepare them to be able to live and fend for themselves in a respectful manner. So, still no clubbing anybody over the head with anything.
Projecting our fear on others comes real close to limiting them the way we limit ourselves, depending on how much they value your opinion. And though there is a difference if we’re dealing with (our) young children, or with the adults around us and the effects are not all the same, most of them aren’t really on the positive side. If you grew up under such circumstances, you know what I mean. If you ever had a boss that had such an attitude towards you, the job itself might have been enjoyable, but I bet the atmosphere in which you were working wasn’t. In cases like this, there’s no telling what kind of projecting you, yourself, might wish to undertake.
Though we all have our fears and doubts – oh how they fit in one go… – they’re a part of our human existence. I wish I could say I never fear, but you all know that would be a lie, if only because I have written otherwise previously 😅 It’s how we handle that fear that counts the most. And how I wish I could say I always handle it perfectly. Overcoming myself is one of the challenges I face every day, some days worse than others and sometimes it takes more than a day to overcome something. Never fear, fear is here…huh…
I remember when I turned 30, many moons ago, I realized I started to be more and more Myself. It’s something I heard more people mention, when reaching a certain age. It’s like you finally leave this youthful uncertainty behind, which I thought I never had to begin with. Getting to a point that I could really feel comfortable with myself. Again, before that, I might have felt the same, but it wasn’t the same, not really. Reaching 30 was a milestone for me, as was 40 and 50. And though a lot of things have become easier and I can anticipate my own behavior better, I think it will never be ‘easy’. At least not for me. Yes, I am actually assuming you might feel the same way, excuse-you-me.
In fact, there are even some things that become more fearful lol. I always really loved to go to any theme park and pick the wildest roller coasters. Well, one of the last times I went – a long time ago unfortunately – I was sitting in one, waiting at the top, you know, right before the drop, the only thing I could think was: ‘What Da Heck Am I Doing To Myself??’ Something akin fear caught me, not that there was anything I could do about it at that moment, but just go for the ride. I don’t recall doing something similar after that. Avoiding fear is one tried tactic indeed.
So how do we turn those negative feelings – insecurity, lack of trust and other fears and doubts – into something positive, like, let’s say Love. Love as I described in Love’s the Word, is able to nullify this all. But if you don’t believe in those things, how would you go about this, relying on your own abilities? Or, what if even the above doesn’t feel like it’s enough? I always wonder what people mean, when they’re mentioning things like: ‘You have to find the strength in yourself’. Where do you even store this? Hold on, do I want to know?
Of course, I’m not a total dunce 😜, we need to be balanced enough to know our own worth and strength and we humans are no weaklings, not really…right? But what if you reach the point, you’ve tried every trick in the book and you’re still defeated by your fears? Anxiety is a real thing of which a lot of people suffer from and it’s the next step after fear is taking the reign over your life. Oh I know, I’m no psychologist, but a bit of common sense and some years of experience will help you come a long way. You might want to consider starting a blog at this point.
There was this one time in my life, I Was visiting a psychologist, reluctantly, but even I knew, Something Had to Change. (Also, my doctor referred me, since it was the first time in 15 years I even visited a doctor, she was thoroughly convinced, something had to be wrong) Although I never thought I would ever need it, I went and it was a good thing too, certainly humbled me and made me more aware of why other people would need this. Changed my point of view you could say, in a good way. Sometimes I even shock myself.
The lovely lady psychologist told me after the first session: ‘Well, I could prescribe you some medication, but I don’t think that’s why you’re here and I don’t really think you need it’. After 2 sessions, she made clear, she was basically not telling me something new, she perceived pretty quickly, it was a mere matter of me needing to process my feelings and failing at that.
After my Mom passed away, I didn’t get the chance to slow down. Wasn’t really able to take the time to properly mourn. Circumstances kept getting worse and working 40+ hours per week sure didn’t help. I was exhausted and had nothing left inside me but feeling like an utter failure. Such moments, there is not much any other human can do to help you get out of there. Being there for one another does really bring comfort, but getting inside one’s head and heart to clear up the mess is impossible. Where was my Faith then? You see, this is one of those moments, when people who don’t believe in God, would still blame him. Funny Thing This.
I’m Human, Surprise! One of the things fear is managing all too often, is to get you side tracked: Make you look only at the negative sides, your mind keeps turning and turning and there’s no more room for anything else. I got in such a negative spiral, going only one way and that was down. One thing we learned early on, is that sometimes you just need an outsider to give a ‘fresh’ outlook on your situation. Someone unbiased and not emotionally involved. We are used to be those persons ourselves a lot. Something’s Gotta Give.
She understood the part of me feeling a failure and pointed out, how my fear of being exactly that, was causing me to lose track of the truth: I loved my children and husband, they loved me, we had a roof over our head, we had food on our table… All basic things, but in truth not basic at all… Putting things back in perspective…And though I only had 3 sessions with the psychologist – the third basically being more of a confirmation I really didn’t need another – it was enough to get things straightened out in my head so I could start working my way back and clear my heart and soul.
My Faith never left me, but I might have left my Faith at one point, getting lost in my fears and insecurities, ending up with no trust to spare for anything or anybody. Exhaustion didn’t really help either. Slowly but surely I got back to where I was and the beautiful thing with faith is, even though I might ‘forget’ sometimes, the way back is always open. So, how do You do it? Claiming you have this amazing inner strength, this well, of never ending power, to survive everything that comes your way? Is there no end to your capability? Somewhere over the city that Bat Sign shines.
Acknowledging fear and knowing what caused it, will certainly help to overcome it. We just need to realize that overcoming fear is not the same as being without it. Overcoming my fear on a good day, to me means, I Will Go Ahead, in spite of it. Not letting my own negative feelings, nor those of people around me, get in the way. Not ignoring them, but not letting them lead me either. Again: I have enough Self-respect and Love, to know my worth. And if there’s a bad day in between, tomorrow has a clean slate 😉
So if you Do have all that strength, I applaud you. Let me in on your secret someday. That’s not me though. I need the security of Faith and Love, to overcome fear of any kind. Sure, that security can come from Steve or the kids, or anybody else close to me. Encouraging me, being there for me, telling me my fear is unfounded and has no place in my life. But mostly, I need the Strength of Love inside myself, that’s NOT mine, because mine has already been proven to be insufficient. Fearless I Am Not. Fear Less I Will.
Wishing y’all a very lovely weekend, Fear Not, you have a week to recover from this ❤