13 August 2007

Blocks to Living with Passion: Fears

In the first of the 3-part series on Blocks to Living with Passion, the Becoming a Woman of Purpose Group gathered to discuss Overcoming Fears. It was a lively and very moving discussion. I was very proud of the way the women came together as total strangers to talk about something very personal and sometimes very painful. And they left knowing that they each were the keepers of something very sacred -- one another's inner light.

One of the things that plague us more than anything else is our fears, whether real or imagined. And when our fears grip us, that inner light grows very dim. Fears are perfectly normal and they let us know that we are on to something amazing. However, it is when we allow those fears to control our lives and stop us from accomplishing the things that we need to do, that blocks us from having a passionate and purposeful life.

A fear is an unpleasant feeling of perceived risk or danger, real or not. Fear also can be described as a feeling of extreme dislike to some conditions/objects, such as: fear of darkness, fear of ghosts, etc. It is one of the basic emotions. We all face fears, which is perfectly normal, unless they control our lives. Although fear is an innate response, objects of fear can be learned. Even though fear can diminish freedom of action; fear is also a signal that there is something for me to learn.

The women spoke of things that did plague them that they probably were not aware of as fear. One of the women shared her definition of fear as: False Evidence Appearing Real. This definition really resonated with some of the women. As a student of the 12-Step Movement, I had heard this many times and sort of dismissed it. But seeing how it moved these women, gave it a new light for me.

Having gone through several tragic and traumatic experiences in my life, I have not really shone light on my fears. When there is something that I need to accomplish and I have fear, I simply do it afraid. The fear isn't going away unless I face it. This isn't to say that this is easy; but it gets easier when you learn to take the actions and let go of the results. I cannot control what will happen once I take the actions, but I can control the actions I choose to take.

I choose to have access to all of my life. When we allow fear to rule, we lose parts of our own lives; not having access to certain parts of life. I refuse to allow anything or anyone to limit me in this way.

One of my fears is speaking in public. And what do I do for a living? I speak in public. Now, I am not masochistic in any way. But I have been given the gift of delivering a very special message to women. And no matter how afraid I am of that task, it is the task I have been given. And I will make the choice to do my part and leave the rest to my Divine Assigner.

Our next discussion will be Overcoming Limiting Beliefs. Will keep you posted.

Wishing you a fearless and passionate life,
Coach Carolyn

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