What are you afraid of?
Okay, this picture literally makes me cringe...
What are you afraid of, and why?
It's important to understand the source of your fear.
Fear is learned, an impression from our own experiences, or possibly someone else's.
Here's an example.
I've been stung by wasps in the past; the big fire-red type that leave an inflamed and swollen welt as evidence they've been there.
They don't want you to forget they mean business.
It's an understatement to say I dislike wasps.
I loathe wasps.
Because I've experienced their angry wrath and understand without a doubt it hurts like hell, I've developed a justifiable fear of wasps. (Justifiable to me anyway)
Now, with that being said, my daughter has witnessed my flailing arms, unladylike curses, and less than graceful sprints across the yard often enough to understand these angry flying torpedoes from the netherworld cannot be trusted, and one should be terrified when in their midst.
To my knowledge she's never been stung, but because I instilled in her this fear from my own experiences, sadly, we now run like screaming crazy idiots together.
I fully understand the source of my fear - painful encounters with aforementioned offenders.
In my daughter's case, the source of HER fear is MY fear.
And I truly hate that.
On the other hand, I'm not afraid of snakes.
While many people would walk on water if a snake slithered up beside them, the two of us have caught many just to have a look and then set them free to go on their sneaky snakey little way.
Had I been a panicked sweaty mess around the slender legless creatures, my guess is, she would be as well. But because I haven't ingrained that fear in her, she has no reason to be alarmed in their presence.
The point this story was supposed to reveal is that sometimes we are afraid of things not because of our own experiences, but because of deep-rooted fears belonging to someone else.
Although fear isn't always a physical threat to one's body, mental fear is just as terrifying and can manifest into physical distress just the same. Fear of public speaking, fear of confrontation, fear of what other people will think, ect.
Whether mental or physical, can you identify the source of your fear?
Is it YOUR fear, or the powerful influence of another person's thoughts or actions you've witnessed in the past?
(What could happen, what might happen - according to Billy Bob)
Don't lose yourself in the fear of others or let fear paralyze you to the point you miss out on a great opportunity.
Don't judge a situation based on another person's experience and always, always search for the source of your fear.
Once you find it, you might discover the fear you've been allowing to feed you isn't even your own.
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