As you may have now realised, I’m a self-help junkie. I love a fix of the law of attraction, an attitude of gratitude and a recital of affirmations. One of the topics often explored in the self-help realm is facing fear. Fear of failure, fear of being criticised, fear of the Kardashians inheriting the earth, fear fear fear. I avoided facing these fears squarely for a long time by escaping down the wine glass. Eventually, I realised that what you resist persists and fears need to be acknowledged and faced before they can dissipate. When you face you fears, you may come to agree with a little someone called Franklin D. Roosevelt who famously said, ‘let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is…fear itself’.
I had many fears around sharing my blog with the world. I had rediscovered my love of writing but hesitated at sharing it. Was it too silly? Too earnest? Irrelevant? Did I need an Instagram husband to take a million photos of me? How would it be received in Facebook land? After much deliberation, I pressed the share button. Some people liked it and read it and commented if they wanted to and some didn’t and maybe some didn’t even see it. Who knows how this algorithm thingo works? I mean, I’m not a scientist.
I was relieved I had shared and after facing that fear once, I could do it again. I began my regular post and the world didn’t end (I’m here every Saturday morning folks. Try the pancakes and don’t forget to tip your waitress) . I realised I have nothing to lose. And don’t it feel good-hey! Alright now. Maybe one day some random will write in the comments that I’m a fat ugly slut but even if that day comes I’m going make like Taylor Swift in that extremely overplayed song and ‘I’m just gonna shake-shake-shake-shake-shake. Shake it off! Shake it off!’ So far my musings haven’t suffered this wrath. And have in fact garnered some thumbs up and positive vibes (thanks friendsies and kind strangers). So what am I actually afraid of?
A question often asked in places where all good inspirational quotes are found is, “What would you do if you weren’t afraid?” Would you quit your job? Speak up? Sweat it? Not sweat it? Wear ugg boots to the shops? (I can not compete in today’s society so I may as well be comfortable) Take a few deep breaths and close your eyes and ask yourself, ‘if I wasn’t afraid I would….’and then listen for the answers. This is a good indication of what your true North is and you can gently steer yourself in this direction. You don’t have to quit your job immediately and move to Bali but you could consider cutting down hours, keep an eye on job sites, use your down time to work on other projects or go to a Balinese restaurant. One Kopi Luwak please.
Unfortunately fear isn’t going away and it presents itself in many forms; anxiety, anger, depression, moody blues. So a good way to deal with it is to reframe it. There’s that classic self-help book (one I haven’t yet read) called “Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway”. It’s funny cause it’s true. The fear is not going away, it’s annoying like that, but we can learn to acknowledge it and move through it without letting it stop us. Another relevant inspirational quote by Robert Heller is, ‘Fear is excitement without the breath’. So try breathing into it my friends as there’s nothing to lose.
How do you deal with fear? Do you think I’m a fat, ugly slut? I’d love to hear from you.
Love and light and endless inspirational quotes xxx Yvette