“Weren’t you afraid?” I asked Dr. Sam, who had left her established chiropractic practice to start a new wellness business.
“Yes,” she admitted, “but I didn’t let it stop me.” We all experience fear; it’s a universal emotion, flashing a “danger ahead” signal when we’re faced with a threat, whether physical or mental. Our response to it ranges from feeling discomfort to being immobilized. No one is immune. Actress Reese Witherspoon in the March 2018 issue of Marie Claire explains, “I see [fear] as this little creature that lives in my life all the time, and I can either pay it attention and not get anything done or I can march ahead and ignore it.”
I’m currently leading a class made up of women recovering from addiction and their mentors. Meagan said, “Fear is trouble, it’s pain. It can take you to a place you don’t want to go.” Her biggest anxiety is very specific: “What if I crash in my recovery and don’t get my son back?” When I asked the women What holds us back or keeps us from being courageous in life? they were all surprised to see that everything they identified was a fear! Fear of: public opinion, failure, negative outcome, change, physical limitations, getting hurt, not fitting in, rejection.
The second discussion question was What’s the cost of not being courageous in life? Some of the consequences they identified included: getting stuck, not really living, holds you back from your full potential, interpersonal relationships suffer, and not being true to your real self. The price we pay for not being courageous enough to face down our fears is high.
Daily, you can succumb to your fear and pay the price, or choose to live beyond it. But how? Next week, I’ll give you “Eight Ways to Live beyond Your Fears.” In the meantime, know that Dr. Sam’s new business is thriving.
by Kathleen Vestal Logan, MS, MA February 26, 2019