Fear is a pesky little fucker, isn’t it? It hides in your closet when you’re little. It accompanies you to the dentist even when you grow up. It sits on the handlebars when you’re learning to ride the bike. It joins you on interviews, crashes your presentations and completely overhauls your desire to take an exciting risk.
Fear is something I’ve lived with most of my life. Like a trusted guardian, it never left my side, it only shape-shifted from one form to another. I did my best to manage it, often calling it something other than its name, like nervousness, anxiety or butterflies. But at the very core of it all, it was always fear.
Fear of pain.
Fear of hurt.
Fear of failure.
Fear of change.
Fear of rejection.
Fear of loneliness.
Fear of judgment.
Fear of embarrassment.
Fear of not being enough.
Fear of not having enough.
Fear of not doing enough.
Fear of falling in love, due to fear of heartbreak.
Fear. Fear. Fear. Fear! Exhausting.
But recently, something changed.
It happened on a brisk summer night. Sitting around a campfire beneath a star-studded sky, I began to share a thought with a circle of friends. They kindly listened as I rambled about this and that, but as soon as the words “I’m just afraid…” escaped my lips, one of my friends interrupted, and with his stern stoic voice said the following words:
“Don’t be afraid. Don’t ever be afraid.”
Something special happened in this moment. They were simple words. Words that I have heard many times before. Yet on this night, they felt brand new. Maybe it was the tone of his voice, maybe it was the beautiful nature around us, maybe it was the strong spirit in my cup. Whatever it was, it felt real, honest and powerful.
When I finally laid my head to rest that night, these words echoed in my mind. What I realized at that moment was life-changing. I suddenly understood that fear will thrive only if we let it. Fear will find a way in, only if we open the door. Fear will whisper doubts in our ears, only if we listen. It will overwhelm us, control us and keep us from reaching our wildest dreams, only if we let it.
Fortunately, there is a cure. However, this cure can’t be prescribed nor can it be bought over the counter or even on the black market. The cure begins with a treatment that is a metaphorical pill which can help relieve the crippling symptoms of fear when taken in small but continuous doses. This treatment is a home remedy that can only be cultivated from a place of love and stored in a warm and cozy place known as the heart. This priceless cure is called trust.
Trust is a guaranteed weapon to diminish fear. It is a mind-calming tool that quiets down the chatter. It fosters hope and reinforces strength. Trust is an incredible companion that grounds us when we need it most. Next time you are feeling fearful, remind yourself to trust.
Trust the journey.
Trust one another.
Trust your partner.
Trust the process.
Trust a higher being.
Trust the universe.
Trust mother nature.
Most importantly, trust yourself.
With trust, comes courage. With courage, comes everything you’ve ever wanted.
For any of you out there who are living with fear, I’d like to share an idea that I recite to myself when battling fear. This thought helps me come back home to my center, my place of balance, my calm, my inner peace, over and over again:
“Bad things are going to happen from time to time, whether you fear them or not. So why spend your precious energy anticipating something that may or may never happen? It is much more productive to preserve your energy to be ready to embrace something that actually shows up. The good, the bad, the ugly and the ever so amazing. Remember to take your daily dose of trust.“
That night under the stars I realized that fear doesn’t serve us, it only does harm. It doesn’t protect, it prevents. Fear is not inherent, fear is taught. Fear is learned, it is cultivated and often times self-inflicted.
But probably the most important lesson of that night was that I recognized that fear is a habit and habits can be broken!
In case you are wondering if I am now truly and utterly fear free? The answer is no, not yet. But I am working it. Breaking a habit takes time, it takes effort, strong will, and dedication. I am committed to becoming the fear-free version of me that I so admire. I know I’ll get there because, I trust myself.
Thus, I decided that going forward I will not let fear win. I won’t let it take over my dreams, my hopes, my wishes and my goals. I won’t let it dictate my future, I won’t let it control my fate.
I hope you, my friends, will also choose trust over fear and when in doubt, repeat after me:
“Don’t be afraid. Don’t ever be afraid.”
Sending you so much love, peace, and good vibrations.
With love, Alyana.