THE POWER OF FEAR
According to the Cambridge dictionary, fear can be explained as “an unpleasant emotion or thought that you have when you are frightened or worried by something dangerous, painful, or bad that is happening or might happen.”
F.E.A.E.R is acronym for False Evidence Appearing Real.
Fear is false evidence that appear real. This means that fear is not a real thing. It is an imagination of things or threat that we make up in our minds. For instance we imagined someone hiding in the dark that can harm us, so immediately our minds pick it up and send signals to our body that is a possible danger around, the body react to it by accepting that indeed there is an actual danger.
Therefore, although fear is not real, it tends to occupy our lives and makes us almost unable to function in extreme cases.
Is Fear a good thing?
As children, we heard our parents and the adults in our lives warned us about failure (aka fear). The adults in our lives often made sure to point out those they considered have failed in life and insist on us not to be like them. I am sure on many occasions, they even went to the extreme by telling us that if we do not work hard, we would end up like those people who have failed.
Consequently, as children, we worked hard and did everything in other not to fail or not to end up like those people who failed. So they used fear as a tool to push us to do the right things.
Due to the fact that many of us have been raised to think of fear as a bad thing, we hardly think about it as a good thing and something that can have an impact on our successes.
Yet contrary to what we may think, whether we are aware of it or not, we as human beings are driven by fear. Some of us, we chase our dreams and succeed at them not because we are fearless but because we are afraid of failing, being homeless or failing in life. So fear is not always a bad thing.
FEAR as a motivator
As human beings it is very important to take the time every now and then to ask ourselves …
Are we motivated by fear or fearlessness?
The truth is, while many of us would like to think our accomplishments and successes are a result of how fearless we are, that is not always the case.
Well for me personally, I used to think that my accomplishments and the things I have done are as a result of how hard I worked or how fearless I was.
However, I have recently come to realise that I was actually motivated by fear. Most of the things I have accomplished are as a result of being afraid of failure.
As a child, I remember people telling me if you don’t work hard you will be like the guy who is homeless or will end up with an unwanted pregnancy at an early age, or if you do bad things you will end up in jail or die.
As a result, I pushed myself very hard to do the right things and worked hard at everything I tried my hands on.
In school, I made sure to study hard. I stayed away from bad friends and promised myself I was never going to be a teenage mother.
So when I graduated high school I wanted to go to the university. When I completed my bachelor’s degree program, I enrolled in a master’s degree program. All so I can live and good life and not be like the lady in my village that took life for granted and is now homeless and considered a failure.
So most of the things I have achieved in life has been motivated by F.E.A.R. even in my past relationships, jobs, or school I was always afraid of failure.
Failure of being alone kept me in bad relationships.
Failure of rejection made me say yes when I did not want to say yes.
Failure of not having friends made me hung on to friends I knew did not have my best interest at heart.
I plan and think so hard about things before doing them because of fear.
There are many adventures I did not take because of fear.
Thus looking back I would say that being afraid of failure has motivated me.
Yes, I know I am here because of God but fear has motivated me to worked hard.
So you see fear is not always a bad a thing.
DANGERS OF FEAR
The truth is, while fear can be a good motivator, it can also be dangerous and dream killer.
Fear can actually cripple you and leave you powerless and hopeless.
Fear if not confronted, can give birth to anxiety, which can take over your life.
We all have some amount of fear in us. Such as fear of death, fear of loneliness, fear of not succeeding in life, fear of losing jobs, fear of people not liking us, fear of dying, and many more.
However, the problem is when fear takes over our lives and stops us from living normal lives or function as human beings.
Fear when left untreated turns into extreme anxiety, which rules and ruins lives.
In my case, while fear has motivated me to work hard and accomplish some of the things I have achieved in life. That same fear is now my enemy.
While I was busy chasing my dreams and being motivated by fear, I was also accumulating fear along the process. Every success I have achieved came with its own fear, which grew as I grew. Over the course of time, I have accumulated bulk of fear that has come to live with me and this fear has now turned into extreme anxiety.
I have lived in total fear of losing it all and everything that I have worked so hard for all disappearing in one day.
I have been afraid of losing my family and my children. In fact I feared everything.
but how did I overcome fear?
“Anxiety is experiencing failure in advance. Tell yourself vivid stories about the worst possible outcome of your work and you will soon come to believe them. Worry is not preparation, and anxiety doesn’t make you better.”
F.E.A.R is False Evidence Appearing Real. Fear is based on false assumptions that will likely not even occur.
In order to overcome fear, I had to understand what F.E.A.R is.
I had to understand that fear can not exist on its own, it needs something to live on, which is my mind.
I had to understand that fear is just in my mind and imagination.
I had to face my fears and understand what causes or triggers my fear.
Lastly I had to learn to silence those voices in my head that tells me there is danger around. I have learned to speak to those voices by telling them they are liars and nothing can harm because I am a child of God.
TADAY I encourage you to do the same.
Face your fear face and speak so loud that it will disappear from your mind.
The truth is, if you are bold enough to face your fear and speak to it, you will be amazed to know that fear does not exist. It is something that is completely made up of by our minds.
Change the way you think about fear because it is nothing. Recreate the way you react to things.
Understand that fear is not a monster in the closet that only comes out in the night. It is not something to be feared. It is something small that comes up every now and then in your journey to test how strong you have gotten.
“ For God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.”
(2 Timothy 1:7)
Throughout the bible, there are so many verses where God commanded us not to be afraid for He is with us.
The bible also says that, because we are children of God, He has given us the power to overcome everything in this world.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
therefore, today I want to encourage you to live a life of faith instead of fear. Rely on the word of God that because we are children of God, He has given us the power to trample upon demons.
And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds
in Jesus Philippians 4:6
I want to leave you with one of my favourite daily verses in the bible….
Fear not, for I am with you;
Be not dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you,
Yes, I will help you,
I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’