Continued from Becoming Fearless! (No. 1) …
“I’m sharing a few, more for me than for you … If you value this mess, then I’ve been a success!” – me
#∞ Fear of Living
Well this started out as an introspective look at how fears have molded my life in the past. I’ve had a feeling for the last few years that I passed some important mark and I guess I was looking for just exactly what it was. After I wrote a few of these posts about becoming fearless I noticed the pattern.
Ok, so I’m sure a lot of people noticed this a long time ago. I’m kinda a blockhead and I didn’t have many adults telling me the important stuff when I was younger. But anyway, the obvious pattern that stands out to me (finally!!!) is this:
Fear is the illusion that I have some control over the bad things that might happen to me.
So many bad things happen and there is really nothing anyone can do to make any difference. We are all just tiny complicated mixtures of atoms that happen to have discovered a sentience along the way that gives us a wonderful advantage. But this advantage is a double edged sword and creates things like fear, greed, and worse things. Once I admit that sometimes horrible things are going to happen in this world and that they are completely out of my control, there is no fear. The mirage melts away. This is what I was discovering that was relaxing me so much.
Writing about it also opened up a secret gift that I didn’t see until now, which is this:
Once I stop spending energy trying to prevent things I have no control over, I have a tremendous amount of energy to focus on the places where I can make a difference.
There are so many things I do everyday that make a difference to me and to others in my life. So many of our moments touch each other’s lives in ways we don’t even see at the time. Concentrating on putting energy into things that DO make a difference has kicked things up a notch for me. I do a better job at everything I do and I have much more spare time to relax.
I know it gives people a bad impression sometimes when something very important is going on and I’m simply not concerned at all. It annoys them quite a bit. But if there is nothing I can do about it, then I have just chosen not to devote time and energy to being afraid. If that seems odd to some people then so be it. Reminds me of a line from Firefly where Jayne says, “Gee, I’ve never been in trouble with the law before.” It just isn’t going to affect me.
Not only that, but the fact that it doesn’t affect me anymore make me so giddy that I can even be happy about it. When something stressful comes up, and I have figured out that there is nothing more I can do, I relax and move on to the next thing. I think about the horrible times and I’ve very pleased indeed that this isn’t one of those. It could be worse!
So this great list I had that I was investigating is just so many worthless words. They are all the same. I still don’t understand where fear comes from, but it is clear that everyone has it as some point. So maybe it is the remnants of some primitive reflex system that kept us alive before we had the ability to think about things clearly. It doesn’t serve much purpose most of the time, since our lives are so safe and there are so many layers of technology between people and nature now. So it has taken me a little adjustment and it has been a fun ride.
- A Life Lived in Fear is No Life to Live (other blog)
- Fearless (gettingbetterman.wordpress.com)
- Becoming Fearless! (No. 1) (skeptycal.wordpress.com)
- Fearless (somethingwrite.wordpress.com)
- Fear…Less (livingalimitlesslife.wordpress.com)
- Fearless and fearful (clearskiesbluewater.wordpress.com)
- How to Overcome Fear: 5 Tricks (inc.com)
- Fear (wikipedia – I went and read this just after finishing this post and it was very interesting)