Guess what? Fear isn’t something that’s conquered. ”Wuuuuuh?,” you say? ”But I’ve been trying so haaard…” It’s true, though. So often you hear people talk of “conquering fear”, as if it were a foe to be slain, a beast to be defeated, a body with a life that expires like all others.
But fear isn’t anything at all, actually. It isn’t RELEVANT at all. It isn’t. Why…?
“Oh, right. This feeling…”
I went out with my friends a few days ago, to do pretty much what we always do – have fun being awkward, weird, and hilarious, and, obviously, to chat girls. Sue us.
Unfortunately though, I had a pretty crappy night. I mean, it was fun. We ALWAYS have fun. But I haven’t been out much recently due to some other stuff, and well…I was ruuuusty. Very rusty, haha. And so I just wasn’t my normal awesome and beautifully charming dude. And after a couple not legit ones, that old sensation of kinda feeling lame crept back.
“Oh, right…This feeling…” Sadness…
Really, it doesn’t matter to me, though. Every night’s different. Some better than others. Some, even, a lot worse than others. Over the course of a hundred or so nights out a year that kinda stuff happens, as does it’s opposite. Because like all things, it’s a process, a journey. And every new experience, even the bad ones, add to my knowledge and my skill.
I know that, and I trust in it. I know it’s no big deal and I’ll be back to my more awesome self soon enough.
But again, it had been awhile, and so a few days ago, at the time, I WAS kinda angry. I WAS frustrated. And I woke up the next day still kinda pissed, still annoyed at how hesitant I had been, that a bit of the nervousness that I had had for the first many years of my life had been there at all.
“What RIGHT did it have to be there? I mean, wtf!!!!??? I’ve put my work in. I’ve done all I should have. I’ve CONQUERED it. Doesn’t it know that?”
Or so I must have thought to myself.
But really, that’s so ridiculous. It’s STUPID even.
Why was I so surprised to be a little nervous or anxious? What else should I have expected after so long away? What reason did I have to care at all? Was I expecting a life without fears, with no anxiety towards ANYTHING, simply because I had done this before; simply because it had been so effortless as recently as a few weeks ago?
Maybe fear is necessary in life. Maybe it isn’t. But mostly, it just doesn’t matter. It’s something that is ALWAYS there in some form, to some degree, in some place of your life – a natural and normal thing in life then. No different than gravity or death, and no more useful a thing to fight against than either.
It’s just a background noise. Just something you know OF, but pay no heed TO – like the sounds and din of a construction site, muted by the headphones in your ears as you sit and watch, consumed in your own enjoyment, and completely oblivious to the noise that would probably drive most others mad. Because you can’t hear it anyway. Because it just…doesn’t…matter.
And so through your actions and your experiences you can pretty much ruin your fear of any one thing to which those efforts are directed. You can desensitize yourself to a degree where the fear becomes largely removed. But though that one fear is “defeated” (to the greatest degree any fear can truly be “defeated”), fear itself will remain. There will continue to be some fear some where in your life.
Because fear is not eliminated. It isn’t conquered. It’s not healed.
It’s like matter (bust out your science books, guys). It isn’t destroyed. It just transforms. It just goes elsewhere.
It moves on from you as you move on from it; as you mature and gain new experiences and lessen old fears, as you find new goals, new desires, and new horizons.
And it is THERE your fear will rest…at the place of your NEXT goal or vision, at the frontier of your newest dreams and purpose – in whatever thing you have desire of but no experience in, and so don’t know the way, or the how, or what may come of it.
And so you may “conquer” your fear of this thing, whatever that is to you and whatever that means to you, but that does not rid you of fear of all things. Nor will it ever.
There will ALWAYS be some new frontier to journey, and some new thing worthy of your fear.
The Super Wise Lesson to Learn…
The point, then, is not to rid yourself of fear, but to learn how to act with it anyway; to do whatever is necessary despite whatever scares you; to do it because you NEED to, and not avoid it simply because you WANT to.
And so I woke up pissed that I had been kinda anxious the night before where previously I wasn’t. I was pissed that it was there at all.
But my frustration was misguided. Because the only thing worth being pissed about was that I noticed it at all.
What do YOU think though?
Lemme know what you think. Leave a comment. How has your fear conquering gone. Does it go away forever ever? Or does your defeating it, and search for a new interest just create some new fear?