Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Brave Now. Afraid Now.

" I'm not afraid of death; I just don't want to be there when it happens."
~Woody Allen

The title is from an old Sesame Street clip of Elmo shifting back and forth from feeling brave to afraid, brave, afraid....


I hate fear. I hate to feel afraid or intimidated. I know it's necessary. It's that feeling in your stomach when something feels off. It's the hair on the back of your neck and the voice in your head saying danger is around to put you on high alert.

But what about the irrational fear. The phobias and the moments when we are scared to do something logically we know should not frighten us.

Recently I've started a lovely horse back to work after more than half of a year recovering from an injury. He has been a perfect gentleman. I should feel confident and secure with my decades of horse experience.

Unfortunately a number of things put my bravery back a step. Not one of them major in any way but the combo and timing put a small tingle of fear in me.

But he has proven that he is smart and sweet, although a bit of a scaredy horse himself sometimes with noises. I have started to trust him and in turn he is more relaxed. Although the first few rides, feeling his nervousness made me nervous, and we would share our growing ball of tense with each other like a defective toy.

How do you make that fear you know isn't helpful or needed dissipate? Whether it's a fear such as waiting nervously for a child to come home or a call with a diagnoses. Or fear that keeps you from trying something new or overcoming an obstacle.

I wish I knew. I personally despise feeling like fear will win. Most of the time I can berate myself into getting past it.

Unfortunately, on occasion, fear has won. Usually that leads to something I like to call my regrets. And at least in my life, regrets are worse than fear.

So if you're struggling with a fear or simply trying to face something bravely let me know. Maybe we can pep talk each other. I find that nothing helps a person with their own fear as much as being a cheerleader for someone else.

So take a minute. Take a breath. Hell, take a drink if needed. And as the saying goes: put on your big girl/boy panties and get to it.

We've got this.

"What you fear most of all is -- fear. Very wise..."
J. K. Rowling, Harry Potter and The Prisoner of Azkaban

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