The Power of Fear

Fear has power over each and every one of us, even if we don’t want to admit it. Fear is a natural basic instinct that can easily control so much of what we do. I, from personal experience, know how debilitating life can be to live through the power that fear has over me. It is exhausting and stressful. It can be crippling.

How does fear have that much power over one person? Because we keep it all in and don’t share what we are afraid of. We don’t tell people. We don’t talk it out. We don’t write it out. We bottle it up so we won’t look incapable or weak.

This has been my life. I know I talk about fear a lot, but I do it because it is something that I am always working through. Fear is not simply something we can overcome once and be “cured” of. Fear is something we will work through for the entirety of our lives. The power that fear has over us is something we will continue to work through and against.

Something I learned about the power of fear that I didn’t realize that I had learned until I read this sentence in Worth It by Brit Barron, is that every time I write or speak about my fear, I am taking away the power it has over me. Do you journal? Do you complain to your friends about things that you won’t admit are fears? Me too. Do you feel better when you do these things? Yeah, me too. Those actions are reducing the power of our fears, even if we don’t realize it.

Every time I share something here with you when it is heavy on my heart or just by starting to type about something that is bothering me, I am reducing the power that the fear I have has over me. Sharing my story with you reduces that power. And you know what, it can reduce the power your fear has over you to.

You are here reading this post about fear and you probably have already thought of many fears that you don’t want to share with people for whatever reason. Or you’ve read a few of my posts and relate to them. A lot of them are about my underlying fears. If you relate to anything I am sharing and feel even a smidge better after reading it, you are also reducing the power your fear has over you.

You don’t have to have a public website to write out your fears. You don’t have to share them with friends. But if you share your fears with a piece of paper and a pen, if you write them out, you will start to feel so much better and you will start to reduce the power your fear has over you. I share with you because I know that I cannot be the only one going through this life with these fears or issues. No, we might not have precisely identical fears or issues, but there can be some sort of similarity. I am sharing so I can hopefully inspire you or be a mentor to you that you’ve always hoped was out there. I am sharing to let you know that you are not alone. And I am sharing because writing it out lifts a giant weight off of my shoulders.

Clarity

According to a Google search, clarity is defined as the quality of being coherent and intelligible. But what does clarity really mean? In my opinion, that may be different depending on who you ask.

Today, clarity might mean something completely different to me than it did a month ago or will in a year. Either way, clarity is something I know I’ve been striving to achieve for a really long time. The thought was that clarity would give me peace and direction in my life. I just needed to achieve clarity to get where I wanted to go.

Today, I feel that I was wrong in that assumption. Today, clarity means something different. Today, I feel as though I have a slice of clarity as I’m coming out of an episode of stress and a bit of depression. My slice of clarity comes from reflecting on what my triggers were over the past few weeks and what caused me the most pain during that time. I shared a little of it with you in my last post Embarrassed.

My triggers tend to always lead to one overarching topic – my past. I have given and continue to give complete control over my life to my past. It is defeating and limiting. It is stressful and depressing. It holds me back.

Today, as I’m writing this, I feel like I’m finally understanding what I need to do to have more clarity in life. I need to stop giving my past so much power over me. But how? Haven’t I come to this conclusion before? Probably. And I might come to it many times over before something finally changes. That is part of growth.

Everything that I’ve been struggling with in the past few weeks has roots in my past. Some people would say just get over it. Some would say that our past defines us. I want to just get over it, but every time I try that approach, I end up right here. My past has defined me for my entire life. I’m tired of it. I’m tired of giving my past complete control over my life. I want clarity to mean that I can identify when my past is triggering me, work through it, and come out of the trigger before ever hitting the stressed or slightly depressed point.

The definition I want clarity to mean to me is that I am clear on my triggers, clear on my steps to overcome them, and clear on my goals and direction in life.

To get to that definition, I have to take steps everyday to release the power that my past has over me. I have to acknowledge my fears and address them.

What does clarity mean to you?