Submitted Date 05/12/2019

Fear is inevitable, no matter your amount of confidence or skill. We all have fears, big or small, debilitating and psychological. What makes you afraid? Of course, but why? These are the questions we love to avoid; we would rather dismiss them than confront them. The confrontation of fears can be scary, exhilarating, emotional, or even monumental. However, without facing our fears, how can we overcome them?

I am someone who is not fearless. Instead, I often describe myself as "afraid of everything" to be a personality trait of mine. That isn't an exaggeration, I face fears for extended periods, while most people face the same fears for an hour or less (ex. Scary movies). Somehow I live alone in an apartment that not only claimed to be haunted but was also the filming location for a classic horror film whose DVD cover at Blockbuster scared me from age 3-14. So how am I living here, alone, despite my anxieties and constant fears? Well, I'm surprised I could do it too, but here's how it all happened.

Besides the specific fear I just explained, I've also had to address many fears head-on in my life-- not because I wanted to, but because I felt forced. Luckily, being forced into addressing those fears was the best thing that ever happened to me. You see, our fears become more significant the more we think about them. The ride up the rollercoaster is more terrifying than the fun and thrilling ride down it. So when you fear something, don't ease your way into it-- embrace the fear and redefine it as courage. Jump into your fears, don't stretch them out.

If you face your fears head on, you are guaranteed a beneficial result. You may meet your fear, and it goes horribly, but that teaches you something about yourself. It shows you, "this isn't for me" while also reminding you of the courage you had to overcome your fear. Or, you could face your fear and realize, "I enjoyed this" while realizing the abilities that outweighed your initial hesitation.

The point I want to make is that we are not immune to fears, but we do hold courage deep inside us to face them and find out if they are worth affecting our actions, emotions, and thoughts.

Replace intimidation with curiosity. Be your authentic self with everyone you meet, so you make authentic connections.


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