We hold on to our fears because they define us. They, we believe, keep us safe. Overcoming fear--of the dark, of scorpions, of speaking in public, of change, of no change--isn't easy, but we make it harder.
Because we hold on.
Fear makes us vulnerable, but without it we think we'll feel nude. Helpless. Fragile. And so, instead of working towards being free, we cultivate the chain that keeps us within the boundaries we know. Better the evil we know, right?
If we're lucky, something happens--a conspiracy of the Universe that kneads coincidence and a sprinkle of enlightenment into the dough of our lives--that forces us to confront our fears. A power outage on a Halloween night when we're all alone. A spiky bug stalking us in the shower. Exposure therapy. External circumstances that dump change on us like a bucket of Siberian-dawn-in-January water.
The fear, although not gone, becomes manageable. And we, far from feeling nude or helpless or weak--man, we feel empowered.
Few embark on that willingly. It takes courage. Pushes us to limits way beyond whatever tolerance we think we have. Doesn't it?
If you know about this, if you've done this, here's my ovation to you. Bra-vo.