Fear Held Me Back For Ten Years

To all the experiences I could’ve had

Photo by Anne Nygård on Unsplash

Fear is a part of the human experience. While the majority of us have common fears, such as, the fear of predators or the fear of illness, or again, the fear of tomorrow and what may happen to us if such and such — some people have different kinds of fears, fears that may drift away from what would usually make us afraid.

At the end of the day, whether we fear that our spouse doesn’t love us anymore, or whether we fear insects, or even needles — fear has a common recognizable perfume to it. When we fear, we don’t think straight for one. Another indicator of fear is the overall “paralysis” we feel in our bodies. And so on.

We may know that it’s just a made-up thing in our mind. Everyone says so after all. We may know that we are safe — there’s no jaguar behind us. We may be the smartest person people know, or the most respected. It doesn’t matter. When we are in fear, all of that drops away. What remains is me, as a person, experiencing fear. And my behavior during the experience of fear may surprise my closed ones, or at least, those who have a certain image of me.

I think that this may be one of the reasons why we put on a show, whether individually or nationally. When their legs were trembling, perhaps our ancestors used their mouths to fake it.

I also think that a lot of us have lost sight of the fine line between knowledge and experience.

We have many talents; human beings I mean. But one of our most practiced ones is the skill of fooling ourselves. I recently realized how I have been fooling myself for basically the last ten years. I’m still flabbergasted. And everytime I ask myself how I could let that happen, my mind comes up with its usual reasons which is all plain nonsense.

You may have fooled yourself for the last month, I did for years, but what about those who do it for an entire lifetime? How do we let this happen? What is it that we are not seeing? Clearly, we are supposed to do something while we’re on Earth. And surely, we do a lot of things. But there seems to be one subtler activity we are supposed to do, which we often don’t — unless we’ve experienced too much pain as an example, and decide to look inside.

It’s certainly not unknown to you that many of us are living in our heads. A whole economy thrives on virtual and online experiences. We seem to be more secluded, and fearful of life’s experiences. What are the reasons to this and why is the world as it is? The answer to those questions is beyond me.

My contribution to those questions, however, would be this:

There is a natural process to how human beings learn. And, there is a healthier way to teach. I have not always been aware of this, but, it’s okay to look like a fool when you are learning something new. It’s also okay to make mistakes as long as you’re being safe, and learning from them. Now, it’s one thing to know this. But it’s another matter when your teacher, or others, are impatient with you. Remember? Knowledge and experience.

The world we live in is what it is. Not everyone has your compassion, your patience, or the mental space to care about your journey — and it’s nothing personal; everyone is going through their own journeys with their own stresses.

So, we need to be a little more courageous, and understanding of the context we find ourselves in. As said, learning anything new has its own requirements. Some things we learn in a safer environment — like meditating. Others, like driving, can be a little chaotic at first. But the experience of learning is somewhat general.

Learning makes us a bit uncomfortable, because we are going out of our ways and embracing a whole new pattern. At first, it’s completely normal to be confused. After a few days of practice, we get better, and overtime — with practice and attention — we build reflexes that make it look like it’s so easy.

Here’s a thing I couldn’t understand before. No one can go through this journey for you. It’s entirely in our hands. Either you do it, or you don’t. No books, no theories, no waiting for the perfect environment will do. You start with what you have, and you go with it.

The world doesn’t always teach us this learning procedure. And even if some insinuate it, the impatience they show with students says otherwise.

Now, since our response to the unknown is similar; we become nervous and want to immediately crawl back to our comfort zone as an example — perhaps we could add some practices to smooth our learning experiences.

Breathing deeply is helpful while one is agitated. If you’re into affirmations, it could also help to keep you focused. If you’re into praying, you could ask for assistance. Or if you are lucky to have a compassionate teacher/environment, simply communicate your needs so that they know how to help you walk through your fear.

These are practical ways to relieve ourselves from stress, and get some of our focus back. Doing so allows us to go through our fears, overcome them, and understand the elusive nature of fear.

A lot of us are held back by different kinds of fears, but as said, fear is fear. Others may mock you because you fear insects, but be sure that they may fear intimacy, as an example, which you don’t. At the end of the day, this should teach us to be more compassionate with one another. We have different journeys, and they should be respected for what they are.

As we all learn from our experiences, and awaken — we understand that the world is as it is, and that we have been its product. With perspective, we bring in more consciousness to our very home that is this Earth, and in time, surely, our children will live in a world where they are encouraged to learn, and more importantly — live.

I hope you enjoyed this read. If you’d like to stay updated with what this fool has to say — you can subscribe to my newsletter here.


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