Fear it is the instinct that protects us from real dangers, fear activates our fight-or-flight responses but a lot of the time our fear can be a response to imaginary dangers too, be fearful of dangers that don’t exist only in our minds.
I wanted to share my recent episode of fear with you…
I came away from a meeting with a writing coach the other day, I was buzzing, on cloud nine I even went and booked myself on a weekend writing retreat, this was it I thought, “I am finally going in the right direction, I WILL finish this book”. The feeling of contentment, reassured of my self-worth, was undeniable, I felt great about life, life was good.
2 days late following a meeting at work, fear kicked in, It was just a few exchanged words but that was it, that was all it took! Time spent rolling over the words and implications sent me spiraling into self-doubt, questioning myself, my job, my worthiness, trust me it doesn’t take much! Fear of failure, fear of not being good enough, fear of talking about shit but never delivering on it! It wasn’t long before the imposter syndrome soon took hold.
When the deep-rooted fear of failure takes over, its invisible to others, no one knows the self-doubt that I carry around, the only indication that something is wrong is my attitude. In one fail swoop it changes from being positive to pessimistic, I struggle to apply myself with basic tasks, just responding to emails feels like a chore. I see the negative in everything any optimism I had previously has disappeared.
I constantly go through cycles of fear – I can be like a fucking Cathryn wheel on steroids, fear can take me from feeling content one minute to worthless in a fucking nanosecond.
The self-doubt, self-worth, kicks in, I can feel paralysed, feeling fearful, unsure about myself and who I am, my passion has gone, I can’t think straight, I feel like I have lost my purpose, its a shitty dark place. I hate being in this dark place, I don’t like the thoughts, the lack of energy, feeling flat, purposeless, sometimes it feels like it won’t ever pass.
But I know it will, you see this isn’t the first time, and it won’t certainly be the last.
Working through FEAR
I will allow myself time to wallow for so long, but I know that at some point I’m going to have to #Haveawordwimesen sort the facts from imaginary fiction, reassure myself that the fear of the unknown is normal and that whatever happens “I’ll be ok”. I always am! Re-affirming who I am, what I have achieved but more importantly acknowledge remind myself that fear isn’t always a negative.
Judy Lief points out that fear restricts our lives, can imprison us, or be used as a tool of oppression. But unlike our fellow creatures, humans can reflect on our fear, and this gives us the capacity to counter the overwhelming sense of anxiety and the dread that infiltrates modern life.
“The essential cause of our suffering and anxiety is ignorance of the nature of reality.” The movement toward fearlessness is in accepting whatever is happening at the moment and looking deeply into what is feared. In this way, we can begin to develop self-awareness of the patterns that inflame our fear and self-acceptance of the nature of who we are.
So rather than see fear as a negative, I study it, dive into it, try and work out where it is coming from, become familiar with it and understand it better. Diving into fear can feel counter-intuitive as our habitual reaction is to push away or deny what frightens us, but getting to know our fears can help us to soften or even eradicate them.
I have learned that if nothing changes then nothing will ever change, and when I am in this dark place sufficed by fear, I know there is one thing or person that can give me a hand back out and that’s me!
And so what if I fail? I’m not even sure what failure will look like? But I know for sure that if I don’t take a risk and break through my fear, I will never know…
Fear is an instinct it is within us whether we like it or not! It how we manage the fear within us that counts.
Try not to be afraid of who you truly are and remember, if you would like to subscribe to more posts, please go to https://www.shithappens.me.uk/contact/ and sign up, If you liked the post please share, if you don’t then do nothing and that’s ok too.
Love Fordy x