We all have fears.
There are fears upon fears that people can have. The range has no boundaries. A person can be afraid of everything and anything. To say that someone is afraid of something small compared to a bigger fear is incorrect because their fear may be huge in their eyes.
Fear is one of the most important emotions.
Fear drives you. Fear keeps you alert. From the scientific level, it releases adrenaline into your brain which signals the "fight or flight" response. Fear shows that there are certain things about a person that can cause them to reveal a side of themselves you may have never seen before.
However, the most important thing about fear, is the essence of it.
Fear is derived from many different things. The fears we have--fear of clowns, heights, failing--they all develop through experiences we've had throughout our lives. They can be traumatizing bouts from our childhood or fears that have rubbed off on us due to others. Our perceptions of the real world are changed when we develop fears. Our brains distort images, manifest scenarios that aren't there, and send our bodies into overdrive whenever triggered.
A person's fear says a lot about them. The story as to how they gained that fear can give you a look into someone's inner self.
Fears shouldn't be belittled. Due to the nature of fears--the way they make people think, act, and even see, show how much power a facet of the mind can have over someone. To a person with a different fear, their friend's fear of heights may be belittled because no one else sees the terror behind climbing above the ground. People need to see all fears--constant and changing--to be what they are: a manifestation of something that can make even the strongest people weak.
While people try to overcome their fears by facing them head on, or making themselves believe the fear is simply a figment of their imagination, some people can never overcome those fears. Fear itself will never leave a person. It will simply morph into another expression of the emotion.
Fear can, however be manipulated. This is where a person's strength can overcome what makes them weak. Using fear to push you forward, to drive you past what is holding you back. Acknowledging your fears and knowing when your fears are becoming more dominant than the rest of your thoughts shows your true strength. Fighting those instances of manipulation set by your brain can prove to be beneficial.
Fear is what you make it. You make your fears, you can re-make it into what you need it to be.
The essence of fear is you yourself.