I believe action is greater than fear.
Many times fears originate and are fed by the “What If?” game we play in our minds. What if, instead, we asked “Wouldn’t it be great if…?”
We can overcome many self-imposed fears by taking clear, consistent action. Growing our capacity and resilience along the way.
At the bottom of this post I’ve included 3 questions – choose one and comment after reading!
Many people fear injury.
We don’t train for that race, or try a new sport, or play and run with kids. We feel stuck in our body as it is because the fear is stronger than the belief that we’re capable. Competent. Safe. Strong. Ready.
Many people fear embarrassment.
We don’t go to the gym where others might see us sweat, or we forgo the yoga class invite from a friend because we don’t already know how to do yoga (that’s why classes exist, right?) We sit the entire evening at a friend’s wedding dance (or get plastered). We wear baggy layers of clothes to hide because the fear is stronger than our belief that we’re worthy. Valued. Beautiful. Equal.
Many people fear disease and death.
We hold on so tightly to fear, worry, and the potential of pain and suffering – without realizing we’re creating pain and suffering. Or we cling to our good health, becoming devastated when we receive a diagnosis or experience injury. Pain and illness happen. Suffering can be transcended. Will we allow our fear to exist more strongly than hope. Faith. Joy. Trust. Resilience?
Many people fear success.
We figure it’s better to stay average and not take too many risks, or we don’t want to stand out because we might get too much attention or feel arrogant (or be called arrogant, I’ve been there). We don’t know if we can handle all the work and responsibility – and all the joy, goodness and reward – that comes with ‘success’ because the fear is stronger than our belief that we are unique. Talented. Deserving. Brave.
Or we’re working with borrowed, unreal expectations, or haven’t defined what success means to us.
Fears can be reasonable. We choose not to walk across freeways, touch a hot stove, or jump off buildings because we understand the consequences.
In the realm of physical feats, we can look with awe at someone’s yoga practice, for example, and discern that for us, standing on our head with one finger up our nose and our feet touching the back of our head is simply not necessary for our daily life and livelihood. We’re not so much afraid as we are clear on where we spend our time and energy instead.
Fears aside, we’re not here to do it A L L – we’re here to do our part impeccably well. With contentment, we let go of certain goals or global missions that we may care deeply about but they don’t feel like ours to achieve. Wonderful – this makes space for the work that’s truly ours to do.
It is our great work to love.
To contribute our gifts.
Our body, mind and soul depend on our actions. Our communities depend on our actions.
It is our great work to engage with this life – to become embodied.
Some people call it enlightenment.
When fear prevents us from loving or living, when it begs us to disengage or withdraw or judge – that’s when we lovingly look into our own eyes and say “If not now, when? What first step can I take right now to move toward what I desire most?”
The students I work with desire to engage with life – and if you’re reading this, I bet you’re hungry for growth and progress and joy, too. You’re in good company here.
What are you afraid of?
How do you define your ‘successful embodied life’?
What first step can you take now to move toward what you desire?
I’d love to hear your response to these questions in the comments below.