What’s Holding You Back From Your Dreams?
“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” ~ Nelson Mandela
Courage is not about being fearless. Courage is moving forward despite the fear. Do you know where fear is showing up in your life? Fear is a good indicator of where we are holding back and shutting down in our life. It signals to us that there is work we need to do to continue our growth.
Fear will rear its ugly head whenever we start to make changes. Whether we want to alter our career path, start a new hobby, break an addiction or change a habit, or in my case, pursue a new relationship, fear shows up. Our hearts show us our fears so we can face them and learn more about ourselves.
This year I have committed to facing my biggest fear- to risk opening up my heart again and taking an adventure in love. It’s been more than two and a half years since I lost the man I thought was my ‘soul mate’. It was the first relationship where I had allowed myself to be completely open and vulnerable, and the cost was high- a broken heart. But to live an optimal life requires suffering and pain. Though I am not evolved enough to welcome pain with open arms, I have come to accept that pain is part of living. By shutting myself off from others because I am scared of more heartache, is closing myself off to life itself.
So what does fear feel like? We have all experienced that feeling of fear. It is an internal energy that prevents us from moving towards the changes we are called to make. It is resistance. It is the voice that tells us we can’t afford to start a new career, that we’ll never find anyone else to love, that we are too old to learn to play the guitar, or that we will fail.
If you let it, fear will paralyze you and keep you exactly where you are. To move beyond it you need to step into the fear with your heart exposed. And that can be terrifying!
Be gentle with yourself when you discover the fear. It can show up as unhappiness, restlessness, or boredom. Have compassion for yourself when you discover it, as you would for any frightened child. The more fearful we are the more certain that the task calling us is important to our growth. If it meant nothing, there would be no resistance. So pay attention to the feelings, the calling is coming from deep within.
Yet most of us, when we feel the fear surface, move immediately to numbing the feeling. We smoke, overeat, drink or shop to excess, surf the web, take sleeping pills, over exercise, anything to avoid the feelings. Yet by acknowledging the fear, and taking even just one small step in the direction we are called to, will create miracles in our life. It is when we truly commit to facing our fears and following our heart the universe aligns to help our dreams come true.
Remember when we face our fear; the fear will lose its power over us. So go ahead, take a deep breath and make the first move. Once you do you will wonder what you were ever afraid of.
With peace and light,