Lately I have been thinking a lot about fear and our reactions to it. I think it is pretty safe to say that most everyone has been afraid at least one time throughout their lives, having to face something that leaves them with a sense of being unsettled. There are different layers of fear that exist for us all, affecting us in a multitude of ways. For some people, facing fears is a daily occurrence, while for others it may be less often. Either way, we all vary in our reactions to fear and the role we allow it to play in our lives.
As I am about to journey once again into the unknown, I have been reflecting upon my own fears and have been curious about how I have been reacting to them. By disengaging from me and watching as though from an outside perspective, I have had the opportunity to learn a great deal about myself and fear. I am learning that when I am scared, I seem to come down on myself by questioning my decisions of the past while expressing anxiety about the future. My head starts working over time as I become bombarded with senseless thoughts and worries, which in turn leaves me feeling very down on myself, as well as my surroundings. Although my ego may be having a field day with this, the rest of me, is not.
What is interesting about being able to disengage and watch your ego from an outside perspective is that you immediately realize that these thoughts and anxieties are not real. Whereas before, my entire being would be consumed and affected by these thoughts and anxieties, I am now able to see them for what they are, a simple reaction to fear. My egos attempt to hold me back from moving forward into the unknown and keep me in a space of comfort. On one level, these reactions can be considered a defense or attempt to protect ourselves from future pain, while on another level we can use these reactions to guide us toward exactly where we need to be.
Even though the fear I have been experiencing still exists, I am now using the wisdom provided by my reactions to it as a clue, leading me to what it is I need to learn next. I am able to walk into the challenge with awareness and clarity, rather than feeling unsure and confused. I can see that my reactions to fear are simply tools available for my use, as I journey through this path into the unknown.
I challenge you all to reflect on your own reactions to fear and be curious about what clues are being provided for you, directing you toward what you need to learn next.