Most of my fears aren’t based on permanent loss, but on my emotions, which are temporary. Since I can survive emotions, I can face fears.
The best observation I've heard on the subject of fear comes from a Christian minister who argues that fear is not a thing outside of us, but an attitude within us. I agree. I think fear is a way of thinking that dominates and drives our actions and leads us into problems instead of out of them.
I find that most of my fears are rooted in my emotions. An interesting observation. I may say, for example, that I'm afraid of losing someone. But what I truly fear, when I dig down to the root, is that I'll feel lonely if I lose that someone. Or for example, on the surface I may think that I fear making a mistake. But when I dig down deep, I realize that what I really fear is that I'll feel embarrassed if I make a mistake. I'm most afraid of how I'm going to feel.
Yet feelings pass. They change. Sometimes they are hard to change, but often it's easy enough to switch emotions. You just have to change the focus of your thoughts and your attention. Emotions are all about what you're thinking about. And so are your fears. In other words, fear is an attitude of the mind.
This fact ought to encourage us all. Fear is something you can choose to control. The things outside of us, whatever they may be, are not fully in our control. But our attitudes... We have control over them. That gives us the power to face our fears and defeat them.
We always have this choice: To face situations believing we can't make it (this is where fear thrives), or to face situations believing we will triumph (this is what the Bible calls the spirit of faith). The attitude of victory (faith) is where victory comes from, and the attitude of defeat (fear) leads to defeat. Which will you choose? It's a choice you'll need to make every day, several times a day. But isn't it worth it to pursue victory? I think it is. How about you?
Copyright (c) 2010 by Michele Chiappetta. All rights reserved.