Frozen By Fear

Do you ever feel like fear is the heaviest weight on your shoulders? If so, how are you able to face the fear and overcome the unknown as you strive to achieve more and be more in life?

I remember being fearful at the age of 6 when I was unhappy with the level of attention I received from my family. Problem was, I thought I knew how to walk back home from my uncle and aunt’s house…. 15 miles away in another town. An hour later, lost on a desolate road in the woods, a stranger saw me crying and called the local police. I returned to my aunt and uncle’s home and probably received solid attention for 6 months, but didn’t like the outcome.

During my junior high days, the principal wanted me to read the Gettysburg Address at the local Memorial Day ceremony. I think we all know in life that the fear of public speaking rates highest on the chart of things people do not like to do. I didn’t let the heart pumping through my chest or the butterflies in my stomach overtake my mind, and as a result I got through and spent so much time rehearsing what I would see, how I would feel, etc. that as a result I ended up memorizing the speech and I can still recite it from memory 25 years later.

We should take our cues from the outgoing children of the world who will ask and persist and take all of your resistance and put it against you until they get what they desire. What’s the worst that can happen if you ask someone for help or take your life into a new path? You don’t want to be living your life playing ‘what if’ as we only have a finite time on this earth.

I’ve read about many therapists who recommend role playing what your fears are and imagine yourself overcoming and conquering them. If you already participate in a mental rehearsal, when going through the actual event you may realize that it was nowhere near as scary as you imagined. Channel the chills, the butterflies and tell your mind that everything will be fine, you’re a great person and the world is conspiring to do good for you.

As I come close to my fourth decade of life, I continually challenge myself to break away from what others think I can’t accomplish and push myself to expand my horizons. You can’t let fear get the best of you. I believe when the feeling enters your mind, find a way to turn around the negative outcome into a positive one. The mind and body have capabilities you would never imagine. I’ve heard of elderly women who lift automobiles off of other humans to save lives, we’ve been able to break the 4 minute mile barrier when it comes to running over the past 60 years and thousands of other accomplishments because other humans were willing to suspend disbelief and fear.

The next time I go into a plane, I will face my fears of turbulence and the sheer heights of it all and gain comfort in knowing I don’t have to be afraid anymore. The thawing continues, one moment and situation at a time.

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