Freedom From Fear

Freedom From Fear

Sometimes, you gotta feel it to heal it.

One of my favorite questions to ask someone is “what is your greatest fear?”

I love this question for a few reasons and one of them is because of the range of responses I typically get.

Another reason is that I think how a person responds to this can say a lot about them. People typically respond on one of two sides of the spectrum: a somewhat funny fear that they laugh about having or an incredibly deep and intense fear of isolation or loss.

For example, sometimes people tell me they’re afraid of clowns or mismatched socks.

Other times, people say they’re afraid of the dark, heights or getting stuck in elevators.

And then there’s always those who say they’re afraid of things they’ve never lived through before, like death.

I’ve learned/been told that the best way to get rid of fear is through desensitization.

“You gotta feel it to heal it” essentially.

In other words, if you’re scared of flying on planes, start by at least going to the airport.

Then, the next time, maybe walk inside of the airport.

After that, try watching the planes out of the window inside of the airport.

Subsequently after these steps, begin moving closer and closer to actually going inside of a plane and eventually, after you’ve successfully conquered all of these steps, you might be able to fly on a plane and feel okay about it.

This has always made sense to me until I realized that you can’t exactly desensitize yourself to the grander fears such as loss, failure or death.

This realization fascinated me because if the best way to get over a fear is to continually expose yourself to that fear, how can you overcome a fear where continual exposure is not necessarily an option?

I don’t have an answer for this but I thought that maybe writing about it would help form some thoughts or understanding on the subject.

Fear is somewhat inevitable, necessary and healthy to a degree. Fear is an unpleasant emotion that keeps us alive and in tune with what in our environment could be a dancer or a threat.

However, when fear becomes the guiding voice in our head instead of a fight or flight instinctual response in certain situations, we become prisoners to that fear.

One of my favorite questions to ask myself about fear is “do I positively know that this fear is true and that I have reason to be fearful of it?”

Usually, the answer is “no” because most of these fears are fleeting. They’re fleeting because they never happen.

At the end of the day, I find that fear is nothing more than an obstacle. An obstacle that we put in front of ourselves.

This is good news though because that means we have the power and control to remove that obstacle since we are the ones who put it there in the first place.

Don’t let the fear of what could happen, make nothing happen.

Cover Image Credit: Sophia Winter

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Growing Through The Cracks

When people say you can’t make it, you have to grow outward.

People accuse me of things I would never do.

Accuse me of people I will never be.

Say I will never grow out of who I once was.

That I will always be my past self.

I will always walk through life trying to get away.

Trying to get away from the person that I used to be.

Trying to escape from the dark points in my past.

Trying to grow through the cracks of my life.

My past self will always catch up to me.

I will revert to my introverted past and get stuck.

Stuck in a persona that I trued to kill long ago.

A persona that I don’t want to see the light of day.

In my past I would just give up.

I would give up the things I love.

Give up the thing I most love doing.

Being myself.

So in the end I would still try to run away.

Run away from my past.

Always keep going and never quitting.

Growing through the cracks.

Cover Image Credit: Brandon Smith

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Learning How To Live With, And Love, Your Scars

They are representative of a significant time in your life. They are representative of how far you've come.

Everyone has scars. Whether they're big or small or purple or pink or visible or subtle or physical or emotional, everyone has them. Scars are apart of who you are, as difficult as that can sometimes be to accept.

I have my own scars. Specifically, two large, upside down T-shaped scars clear and pink across my chest from a major breast reduction surgery I had last year. Since this surgery changed my life in every other aspect for the better, at first I didn't think about the scars at all. I was ecstatic that this surgery fixed my pain and made me happier. But as I healed, my scars definitely seemed to be taking a long time to look any better than the jagged, red lines that they were. After a little while, it got hard to look down at my chest and feel, well, a little mutilated. Somewhere in the back of my mind, I knew my doctor had told me "it'll get worse before it gets better," and that stuck with me. It can apply to lots of different situations in terms of scarring.

As I grew and got used to these scars on my body, I reminded myself that these scars are apart of me and represented a pivotal time in my life. They represented a battle I had with my body for so many years, and how I came out on top and beat the constant pain I was under. And this can ring true for so many different situations: whether your scars are from a surgery, an accident, self harm or they're internal, they are representative of a significant time in your life. They are representative of how far you've come. And that's something to be proud of. You're still here! You're living, you're surviving, you're making it.

Of course, everyone's situation is different. Everyone processes differently. Everyone heals differently, physically and emotionally. But what has worked for me in learning to love the scars that adorn my body through recognizing that receiving them has changed my quality of life. For the better.

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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