The struggle is real

I wonder why we shy away from talking about our fears. Are we afraid of being ridiculed? Our fears being too small? What is it exactly that it makes us so reluctant in showing up with that side of ourselves, too? After all, it is an integral part of our psyche, and we come to the party with both the good and the bad. What I find ironic and a tad interesting is that we’re not that shy in sharing our dreams and expectations, our hopes and ambitions. We bring them to the table with a grin, we’re proud of them, we carry them like riches, and we want to show them off to people.

I’ve noticed that, when we share the hopeful side of us, there’s a twofold reaction we’ll get: Oh my god, so cool, glad you want this, go get it, I’m cheering for you and Oh, wow, that’s a bit crazy, why would you want this, what’s wrong with what you have now? One could be so lucky and only get the cheering, though I cannot stop wondering whether we need the pessimists, the detractors, just as much we need the cheerleaders. It’s a game of balance, of course, although I would say that it’s the no’s that kind of push us further and ambition us to turn that dream into a reality if we want it bad enough.

My question is: why don’t we share our fears, too? What’s keeping us from not showing that so-called dark side of ourselves? I’ve been doing a lot of fear-sharing lately, as part of an organized exercise (more of this another time). And I’ve realised that people don’t frown, and they don’t think you’re crazy, au contraire, they see and accept you. And they share their own fears, too, not because of the need for reciprocation – it’s their generosity that commends them to do that. And you want to know something else? Once we talk about our fears, put them out in the open, either in writing or in a conversation, we acknowledge them. Which means they become something palpable, they upgrade from the in-our-head status to in-the-present. And suddenly, they become manageable, they become actionable, we can see the possibilities that lie ahead, because we’re not stuck in the conversations happening upstairs.

Here’s my a-ha moment regarding fear. This whole fear aspect of the conversation doesn’t last long, you move to the next thing, conversation flows, as it happens when you’re in dialogue. What’s more, if you’re not comfortable in sharing this with another human being, in a verbal conversation, put it in writing, talk to your dog or your fish. It still works, and once you voice it out, the pen on paper will move on, you’ll find yourself telling your dog another story, and you’ll also feel relief. Try it out and see for yourself, observe your own change in motion. It’s magic <3