“Fear is only as deep as the mind allows.”
– Japanese Proverb
If this proverb doesn’t rock your world, then I don’t know what will. I came across it a few weeks ago, and I have been thinking a lot about the role fear plays in my life.
Asking myself about my fears and the reasons behind them leads me to a lot of questions. Which concerns are rational versus irrational and how do they affect my emotional well-being?
Fear can mean many things to different people. According to Merriam-Webster, the definition of fear is an unpleasant often strong emotion caused by anticipation or awareness of danger.
Fear comes from real awareness of danger or anticipation of the possibility of danger. Just because I anticipate something may be dangerous doesn’t mean it’s going to result in something negative. Actually, in my life, 99% of my fears don’t even come true. This means that there are many things I fear that won’t even happen, which results in useless worrying.
Here are a few thoughts helped me walk through my fears that may help you do the same.
What are your fears?
One of the most significant issues with fears is that they are larger than life abstract things that haunt us. However, when you force yourself to write out your fears, you may be surprised that they aren’t as huge as you think they are.
So ask yourself this question and make a list of your answers.
“What are my fears?”
When I made my list of fears I thought I would have a lot more. The one that stood out the most was my fear that I wouldn’t be able to live my purpose. I fear that something including myself would get in the way of my life purpose. Whether it was my negative self-talk or at times my struggle with carrying out my mission, I was getting in my own way.
Getting clarity in this area helps me step up and out of my own way. It reminds me to continue to do whatever it takes to remain healthy, so I can continue to serve others and live out my purpose.
What excuses are you using?
I believe that fear is an excuse to stay stuck in one place and not take action. Fear has kept me stuck many times, and I used it as a reason to not move forward.
Now I call fear what it is…an excuse.
So when I feel scared or intimidated, I tell myself, take one step. When I take one step, it is proof that I am moving forward and taking action. Then momentum builds, and I can keep moving towards my purpose.
Are you worried you will do something wrong?
Another thing I realized was that I often was worried I would do something wrong or incorrect. The thought that I was doing something wrong allowed me not to do anything, which led me to more frustration towards myself.
Every day I have to remind myself that as long as I’m living my truth and doing what is right for me, I’m moving in the right direction. Some days I do care what others may think of me and other days I don’t give a flip. The latter days are my favorite, and they provide me with the evidence to push through the harder days.
It’s okay if you have to remind yourself that you don’t need permission from others or that you are enough. If you don’t do this for yourself, who will do it for you?
It is impossible for you to make others happy or satisfied. They have to do this for themselves, so stop worrying so much because it is increasing your fear.
I hope you will take this opportunity to permit yourself to do what is best for you. When you do this, you minimize your fears, and you will see yourself move forward.
Go deep inside, listen to your instinct, and let this lead you in your life. Other people’s voices will come and go, but your inner voice is constant. Make sure it is the healthiest it can be and embrace the power you have within to work through your fears. I guarantee that you will not regret it.
What are your fears and what is getting in the way of you living your life? Share it with me in the comment section below.
A clinical sexologist and psychotherapist. From sex/intimacy, personal growth, and relationships, I am here to help you every step of the way.