It’s easy to let fear rule.
Not comfortable, by any means, but it’s infinitely easier to let that sharp, stabbing feeling dig in than to fight it off, to reassure ourselves that this is normal and it’ll pass and it’s worth pushing through the dread to the other side… that even a feeling of failure will ebb in the end, but without forcing through the trepidation to whatever the outcome will be, all that’s left is the unknown. All that remains is the uncertainty – could it have been good? Might we have made it? Should I have taken the risk after all?
Fear steals that possibility from us. It leaves cold remains of what could be, both good and bad. No fire, no failure, just a tepid whimper of unfulfilled potential in either direction.
I am constantly pushing through that fear. I know that I often look fearless, because I try hard not to let anxiety show, I try to keep my game face going. But here on this blog, you know that it’s all blistering honesty, and I’m here to tell you: I’m afraid all the time. The trick is that I try my hardest not to let the fear rule. I tell myself constantly that I cannot let the fear win, I cannot let it hold me back from the things that I desire, the dreams that I want to achieve, the people I want to meet.
The whisper of fear is seductive: you aren’t good enough. He isn’t really interested in you. You are so fucking boring, everyone thinks you’re a fake, you will fail at this, at your dreams, at EVERYTHING.
LIES. That’s all that fear knows how to do! It lies, and it does so skillfully – because that’s the only trick it’s got. It plays off of reasonable worries, it knows how to get into your head and mess you all up if you let it win. It especially knows that it can be quite valuable sometimes, and that occasionally it’s got a message that you need to hear for your own good. And it takes that occasional usefulness and it plays it up for all it’s worth.
Fear? You are such an ass. But you don’t get to rule me.
Maybe I’m not good enough sometimes. But a lot of the time? I’m great. I’m skilled and kind and funny and smart.
Maybe he isn’t interested in me. But if so, then someone else, a better someone for me, will be.
Maybe I am boring sometimes. And sometimes I will fail. And maybe people sometimes do think I’m a fake, but those aren’t the people whose opinions will matter, in the long run.
What matters is that I try. What matters is that I am kind. What matters is that I keep going. What matters is that I keep my heart and mind open and ready for all life has to offer.
Even if I fall in this moment, I know how to get back up. That’s what matters.