Living Life In Fear: How Our Greatest Comforts Prevent Growth

Living Life In Fear: How Our Greatest Comforts Prevent Growth


 

I never thought it would happen– I never thought I would be here. I have spent the majority of my life single and free from long-lasting commitments of any kind; I’ve simply been trying to take care of myself– trying to find my own way, fulfill my own goals and life purpose to the best of my ability.

If someone would have said even two years ago that I would be preparing to be a father….. I would have laughed…HARD….then had a panic attack .  The adage goes, ” If you want to make God laugh, tell him about your plans”. Well, here I sit, consciously confronting all of the expectations and plans I have had in my life up until this point as I try and make sense of it all.

It has become clearer to me which ones are real and which ones are fear based.

I have started to realize which plans, ideas, projects and even choices were forged from a place of inner fear, and which ones were forged from a place connected to my higher self.  My fear of commitment to one person, my fear of having my own family, my fear of school and my fear of failing at my duties and responsibilities within those and many other roles has handicapped me more than I have conned myself into believing.

They are those latter plans that the universe has laughed at, the ones that were created to prevent myself from facing my deepest fears. Not being good enough, strong enough or smart enough.

My work now, is to face these fears, battle the victim mentality and move forward as an empowered and courageous human being. It won’t be easy, but when has life ever truly been easy? Facing fear doesn’t mean you have conquered, it means you are willing to tread into the unknown, arms open with trembling hands as you fight with your demons to become the man you truly are, in this lifetime.

I have realized that my desire to minimize commitment comes from a fear of failing, one that many other people also battle with. Is this fear irrational? I have failed at many things in the past: friendships, relationships, businesses etc… Naturally, this is what fuels the fear in us as humans: Failure. But the greatest men, no matter their purpose, career, skill-sets or passions have failed more than they have succeeded, although we never hear about the failures. I think of a Michael Jordan quote, “I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”

Nothing in life is easy and those who succeed at their goals are no smarter, luckier or better than you or I. They simply never give up, cower away, or quit when the going gets tough. Each one of us must learn to do this in our own lives; face our greatest fears and be truthful with ourselves and never give up.

The things we fear most stare us in the face from across ourselves at the opposite end of the spectrum. The opposite end of the spectrum are the things that make us, comfortable. The things we use to cope and make us comfortable, naturally, must help us to shy away from the things that make us uncomfortable.

There is one question we each must ask ourselves before we do anything: Is this thought or choice coming from a place of fear or from somewhere greater? Don’t get too comfortable in your life, comfort amounts to stagnancy and stagnancy is the number one destroyer of life.
I see it everyday, with complete strangers, with those I love, and if I’m not doing my work, even myself. We are here to face our deepest fears, conquer them and move on to different things. Life will always find a way to get you out of your comfort zone when it gets too stagnant.

The fear itself is worse than the reality and focusing on the beauty of the unknown is freeing to the soul.

Yes, I never thought I would be a father, I never thought it would “happen to me”, but here I am. As I write this, I feel as though I am on the verge of freeing myself from one of my greatest fears. This doesn’t mean I am no longer terrified, because I am most certainly am and will continue to be, but knowing I am facing the fear and panic head on makes me sure of the fact that it will be one of the greatest opportunities for learning I will have in this lifetime.

  

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