Have you ever allowed fear to hold you back from exploring something you have always wanted? Have you ever built up a wall of excuses and reasons why you couldn’t possibly go after something you dream of? Do you find yourself getting so caught up in the whirlwind of life that you rarely stop to consider what it is you really want…what happiness means to you?
I have experienced all of these things during different times in my life. The most recurring one being the fear of pushing past my comfort zones.
Fear has a strange sensation, it can be physical, emotional, cognitive and often all three at once. The thing I find the most perplexing about fear is that when it really settles in and takes hold, it can feel so real that it seems near impossible to move past.
Fear has a way of becoming a stopping place for many people on their life journey. That is not to say you can’t live a perfectly happy and normal life staying within your comfort zone, people do it all the time. But the doors to new possibilities that may allow for even richer, fuller and more vibrant life experiences, are closed tight when we allow fear to take over and navigate our steps forward.
I absolutely love the idea of viewing fear as F.E.A.R = false evidence appearing real. Under this lens, fear transforms into a really cleverly crafted story of our own making. It invites us to consider the idea that perhaps the thing that is holding us back, is in reality just a creative and emotionally charged story that is just that – a story. If we are powerful enough to create these stories, then certainly we can choose the next chapter and change the course to a different ending.
Instead of becoming paralyzed by fear, what might happen if we ask ourselves: Is this fear really real? What are some other possible ways of viewing the fear that would help me? Could I feel this fear and possibly go out on a limb and try anyway? When we see fear in this light, it doesn’t make it vanish. It does however make room to open up the door to fresh perspective and countless new possibilities for our dreams, goals and happiness.
What if we were to view ours fears, excuses, and demanding schedules as things of our own making? What if we were to realize that if we have the creative resources to craft these very real feeling stories about all the reason why we can’t do something; then we can also flip the story line to create all of the reasons why we CAN…what then?
Try it out, ask yourself: “What do I want in this situation?” Then listen to the answer that comes. If your response is filled with excuses and reasons why this thing you want won’t happen; or if there is an instant fear that creeps in about why you can’t, see what happens if you humour yourself for a moment, and consider those reasons or fears as something you have the ability to move past. What might happen when you see yourself as a powerful creator of your own life who gets to choose to be an opener of doors?
When we move into the driver’s seat of our life, we begin to notice that we are steering ourselves in whatever direction we choose. If our car stalls or takes a different route than we hoped and we still really want to get to that dream destination, we have the ability to take our car off autopilot. We can take conscious control of our destination by realizing that our way of viewing what is possible, what is real and what is a story, is ours by our own design.
Each of us has the ability to live the life of our dreams. We are all meant to live happy fulfilling lives by our definition. When we begin to practice this, and take small steps in the direction we most want to go, the doors to endless opportunities become gateways we travel through on purpose. Which doors do you most want to open in YOUR life? What is YOUR definition of a life well lived?
‘Believe in Yourself’ ~ Emily