I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear. ~Nelson Mandela
Thinking a lot about fear lately. How it drives us, motivates us and often paralyzes us. We have all heard or seen the lists based on polls of the things people fear the most. These lists often include the following in no particular order; fear of flying, public speaking, spiders, snakes, dying, heights, pain, etc, etc, etc. We also have fears with social and emotional implications; rejection, disappointments, abandonment, ridicule, exclusion, etc, etc, etc.
Somewhere, inside, on a deeper level are we often more fearful of others simply knowing that we are afraid?
To allow our fear to be visible, well this implies a transparency and vulnerability allowing others to see us truly as we are. A matter of trust that others will not betray us when we are transparent and vulnerable. I know there are times when I often do not raise my hand, speak or stand up when I should. I tell myself this is because I do not want to offend or to be considered a trouble maker. I label this fear as one of not wanting to be rejected, ridiculed, shunned or even thought to be stupid.
On an even deeper level I am now beginning to realize that it is true that my overwhelming fear is a fear of others actually knowing that I am fearful.
Does that make sense? What do you think?