Nothing To Fear But...


What are you afraid of?  Are you afraid of the dark?  Are you afraid of losing your job?— your hair?  Are you afraid of monsters—because there are monsters out there.  Everybody seems to have some sort of fear.  But can that fear be holding you back from realizing your dreams—or even just having a better quality of life.  Fear can get in the way of success or happiness.  It would be a tragedy if fear kept you from achieving optimal joy.

Can Fear Be A Good Thing?

storm clouds above a tree

Now, I’m not saying to throw caution to the wind.  It’s important to avoid doing things that would bring harm to someone.  I mean, there are real dangers that we have to look out for.  It’s a good idea to keep your eyes open and pay attention when you are using a really sharp knife.  If you go on a hike you want to dress appropriately, stay on the designated path, and keep your eyes open for rattlesnakes, bears, panthers, or whatever wild animal might live in your area.

When Fear Takes Over

driving down the road in a snow storm

But sometimes fear can overtake us and control our lives.  Fear can become a hinderance or even an obstacle if we allow it to.  It can keep a person from pursuing that really awesome job because of lack of confidence.  What if I don’t have the skills the employer wants?  What if I’m not smart enough to do the job?  What if they just don’t like me or the way I look?  WHAT IF? WHAT IF? WHAT IF?

painting of a little girl on a swing on the outside of a school wall

Well—what if you do have the skills?  What if you are underestimating yourself?  What if you are the perfect person for the job?  Why not just go for it and see what happens?  Maybe you will get the job.  Maybe you won’t.  What then?  Well, then—move on.  Maybe a better job that fits you even better will come along next week…or the next day and you will decide you didn’t want that job after all.  It never hurts to try something.

Fear Is A Reaction—Courage Is A Decision

thick storm clouds over a tree

Fear is a normal feeling we develop after a real or perceived negative experience.  When we try something and it doesn’t turn out the way we thought it would or someone responds poorly we can become afraid to do that thing again.  Again, that can be a good reaction.  If we throw a rock at someone's head when we are little and that person cries and has to have stitches it’s a good idea not to throw rocks at people’s heads.  If we eat the last of the ice cream and our big brother or sister beats us up, we may not eat the last of the ice cream again—or we might.

art sculpture of a thing running

What we need to do when we are feeling fear and hesitating to go after a prize is ask ourselves a question.  We need to ask why that fear is occurring in the present moment.  Is it because some sort of harm might occur?  If so, it would probably not be a good idea to ignore that fear—even if it means that the only harm is a person gets hurt feelings.  It all depends on the gravity of the situation and the person it involves.

Fear Can Cause Us To Make Choices

post with arrows pointing to different destinations

There may be times when it is necessary to hurt another person’s feelings.  Let’s take a hypothetical situation where one of your sibling’s loses their job.  Now—you told your 10-year-old son that you would take him to Disneyland next month.  The only problem is your sibling is going to be struggling financially and really needs you to help them out.  Your son is likely to be upset but you feel like you have to help your sibling out.  You are afraid to hurt your sibling by not helping but at the same time you are afraid to break your little cherub’s heart.  Fear has its place.  God gave it to us for a reason.  We just have to be careful not to let it overwhelm us in an inappropriate way.

Where Fear Ends, Life Begins

long road in the middle of the desert

When we face our fears and make informed choices things can turn out very well.  I have experienced this myself and am very happy with how things have turned out.  One day I was trying to make a monumental decision.  I was at a critical crossroads in my life and wasn’t sure what my next move was going to be.  All of a sudden, I realized I did not need to be stuck where I was.  Actually, this has happened to me more than once, but I will stick to the one.

Niagara Falls in the winter

I started going through the steps and moved forward with my plan.  That one decision to quit my job has ended up with the past few years of my life being an amazing adventure.  The video above and a few other posts on this blog explain how my wonderful journey has turned out.  I am always telling people—and I’m telling you—life is an adventure—one great big incredible adventure.

tree in a field

You may be thinking that your life is anything but an adventure but think about this.  Indiana Jones is an adventure movie, correct?  Well, do you think he was having a great ole jolly time when he was running from that huge boulder?  But it is still an adventure movie.  Life may not always be full of laughing and fun, but it is still an adventure.  And if you look at some of the bad experiences you have faced you can likely think of benefits that have come out of them.

How Can You Keep Fear In Its Place?

The first thing you have to do is to figure out what you love and DO IT.  Living your adventure will bring a great sense of self-worth and immense joy.  There are many obstacles that can pop up in life: Personal apprehension and fear, rejections or just simply no response, people who try to smash your dreams or simply instill doubts.  Don’t let fear stemming from these types of situations hold you back.  LIVE YOUR ADVENTURE.

yellow smiley face picture that says don't let anyone put you in a box

There are many ways I fought to live my adventure.  I volunteered to write an online newspaper for my hometown.  I thoroughly enjoyed doing this and got a lot of satisfaction out of achieving this part of my dream—even though I didn’t know it was part of my dream until I did it.  I always write about what I love.  I never gave up on my dream while enduring an abusive relationship where my dreams were belittled and crushed.

lake surrounded by trees

Now I am living in my dream destination—where I have wanted to be since I was eight years old.  I get to share my adventure with others through posts like this one along with my photography.  Sure, there are always little bumps in the road that come along but with a little diligence they can be overcome.  Don’t ever let anyone—or fear— limit you from achieving your dreams.  And don’t ever let anyone tell you that you can’t have two or three dream branches.

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