Everyone is afraid.
I’m afraid. Somewhere inside, you’re afraid. Everyone you know is afraid, about something, some of the time.
People living lives of purpose aren’t any less afraid than the rest of us, they’re just practiced at not letting it stop them.
So, we’re afraid. Yay! HOW NORMAL OF US!
It’s not ALL we are, of course.
But wouldn’t it be great if we could wear our fear around out in the open, like clothes? And when we met people and they said, How are you? It was just a regular thing to say the whole truth, like, Well, I love my kids and my friends are the best and I’m pretty happy with this outfit but I’m feeling afraid about my life and whether I’m getting to the things that really matter enough and I’m slightly panicky that my time here on earth is whizzing by and I just don’t want to die with my song still inside me. Thanks for asking–I’ll have the tuna sandwich on rye.
I mean, as long as the person telling you they’re scared isn’t asking anything of you, isn’t asking you to fix it or carry it for them or even listen to too much of it, wouldn’t it be amazing to normalize it?
Confidence is yummy. It can be a synonym for courage and also for certainty but aren’t those two very different things? I love this things Dani Shapiro said, “Confidence can create conditions of impermeability which are antithetical to the risky adventure of creative discovery.”
Me? I want courage confidence, not certainty confidence.
As much as I like the feeling of knowing, I’m even more excited when I’m okay with not knowing. When I can say, Feeling lost, afraid, insecure, I welcome you! Come at me like the wind so I can discover you don’t have the power to stop me because it turns out, I’m mostly made of space.
Call your fear out. Call down to it to where it’s trying to hide or run the show. Say, Hellooooooooo fear! Shine the light on it. See it as neither bad news or good news but rather simply, news that you are alive. Say, Fear? Welcome. Let’s go do some shit.
And then tell about it.