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The Emotion Known As Fear
" -Ruby Dee.
The Emotion Known as Fear Fear is an emotion we have all experienced at some time on our journey.
Of course, there are real fears which are based in fact, such as fear for your safety if you're alone at night in a questionable neighborhood.
However, more often our fears manifest from intangible sources in the forms of fear of change; fear of the unknown; fear of rejection; fear of failure; and even, fear of success.
Fear of Success I have a very talented designer friend that 20 years ago could have, and should have been huge, with a clothing line and brand that rivaled the big names-Vera Wang, Michael Kors, and Versace.
But for as long as I've known him he has done something to undermine himself.
Through destructive behavior, relationships, and self-deprecation, he has continuously sabotaged his efforts.
I never understood why until I realized that if he were to actually follow through and reach his full potential, he'd have to deal with the success that came along with it.
He wasn't afraid to fail, he was afraid to succeed; afraid of what success might require or demand of him.
Confront Your Fears They say the best thing we can do to eradicate ours fears is to confront them.
I've always had a fear of heights, so in 1990, I jumped out of a plane, from 10,000ft; in 1993 I took a ride in a hot air balloon; in 1997 I went to the 110th floor of the World Trade building for dinner at Windows on the World; and I force myself to drive over bridges (which is another one of my fears).
I can't say that I am not still anxious and a little nervous when it comes to heights and bridges, but I have definitely found a way to manage those fears and face them head on.
Recognizing Fear However, some of us aren't able to face our fears because we don't recognize fear, as fear.
We will call it, or label it something else which enables us to make excuses and rationalize our behavior; thus creating obstacles that seem so realistic and logical in our minds that we are incapable of moving forward.
Hidden fears can even convince us that we really didn't want what we were dreaming about in the first place.
We have to look inward to discover whether some form of fear has us paralyzed.
If you find fear is operating in your life, question the validity of your fear.
Is it factually based? Is it true? Often friends and family members can convince us that our dreams are unrealistic.
But that's just their opinion which may not be based in fact.
Be careful not to adopt the fears of well-meaning loved ones and associates.
Keep Your Eyes on the Prize In order to achieve your dreams you must "keep your eyes on the prize.
" If you're finding yourself too easily distracted, remember fear can show up as lack of focus.
I am personally really good at focusing time, energy, and effort on other things (and people) so that I don't have to focus on my own "stuff.
" I'm comfortable helping other people.
However, success requires moving beyond your comfort zone; and I don't have to tell you that that can be frightening.
Choose Faith Instead I can remember a time when I was paralyzed with fear and I didn't know what to do, or where to go.
Then a friend reminded me that when you reach a cliff and you are trying to decide what your next step should be, trust in God.
He will either give you a firm place to put your foot, or provide you with wings to fly.
That's called FAITH.
Both faith and fear require you to believe something about the future that you can't see.
So why not choose faith instead of fear?