Fear, Itself

By: Erin Rose Hennessy

“Fear, Itself” is the title of an episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. In it, Buffy and her friends are confronted with their worst fears come to life. In the end, they are literally faced by the Fear Demon. All the terror is diminished when they realize the Fear Demon is a mere 3 inches tall and Buffy is able to slay him in one swift stomp of her foot.

Do you ever find yourself making your fears larger than they actually are? Situations get built up so far in our heads that all of a sudden, that tiny spider in the corner has multipled in size and has three hundred eyes, sharp claws, and is spitting out poisonous venom so lethal, it would bring down the Hulk.

Wait, that spider? That tiny one there that isn’t hurting anyone? Yep, that one. It will kill me the second I look away! I know it will!

I’ve also noticed this applies to life, itself.

Ever been in a position where you want more out of life? You want to move forward and do something new. You know you need the challenge, the next step, the exciting things this new step has to offer. You want to jump, you need to jump, but there is that nagging feeling in the back of your head that scares the wits out of you. It keeps you from jumping. “Stay safe” it says. “Stay here in the cocoon of safety and what you know.”

The problem with that is human beings (even this one who hates change), need variety in their lives. At some point, something does need to change. It’s that pesky fear of rejection and failure that keeps many from realizing their true potential. At what point do we say “Nuts to this? I’m jumping anyway!”
It is a true test of courage and strength to recognize that the thing holding you back is simply fear. It’s not that you can’t. It’s that you’re having a hard time because of fear and panic. You want more, heck, sometimes you know you need to change for a financial, emotional, mental, or other reason, but it’s that last dive off the deep end that terrifies people.

How do you overcome your fear of doing something – even something that you want to do? Share in the comments!

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