Fear is your friend
In late summer, along with 1000 other people, I drove through a rainy, humid night to hear author Elizabeth Gilbert speak.
At the end of her talk she was asked about fear and how to overcome it.
She said, “I don’t want to be a fearless person”
And then she told us why:
“Creativity can’t take one step without fear coming right along.”
Liz’s take is that fear is an old, old friend to each of us.
She painted the picture of fear as a muscle bound, not-so-smart, over protective cousin, always there at-the-ready to punch someone’s lights out.
But fear is a loyal friend for sure – several times fear has saved your life.
At just the right moment, it’s leaned close and whispered in your ear: don’t get in that car with that guy; don’t go down that dark alley.
When it’s truly in a life or death situation, fear’s such a powerful ally.
But it over reacts a lot.
For example, Don’t get up and do that speech because you’ll die! is an over-reaction.
Liz Gilbert encouraged us to talk with fear, to listen to it, and to thank it for all that protection and care.
Then firmly and kindly let it know you aren’t going to die if you do that speech or call that person.
And then go right ahead and do it, with fear supporting, but no longer pressing all the panic buttons and shutting down the show.
I first heard Liz Gilbert talk about this idea on the Emerging Women podcast. It’s pretty woo-woo in places, but if (like me) some of that rocks your boat, then you can find it here.
“It seems to me that the less I fight my fear, the less it fights back.
If I can relax, fear relaxes, too.”
See you on the road,