From this still image, one can’t see the quaking and trembling that was going on in her body. But it was there. She was terrified of the first spring thunderstorm, which in my opinion, was pretty wimpy. But it sent her running for shelter and protection, which she found in the cubby-hole under my desk.

We seldom think of fears as protection, but in a way, they are. Often, at some point in our lives, we experienced an event that sent us running for shelter and protection from something we perceived as harmful. Perhaps a physical accident or natural disaster, or maybe a huge conflict within the family helped shape the belief that we needed protection from that event. So we built a cocoon around ourselves to shield us should that event occur and maybe harm us in the future. Fear is that emotional indicator that sends the adrenaline coursing through our veins and says, “Run! Danger, Will Robinson!” And we find ourselves hovered inside our shelter for safety.

In a recent conversation with a friend, she shared some wise words from her therapist, “Feelings are real and need to be felt. Processed. Explored with curiosity.” We were talking about disappointment, but any feeling or emotion fits in this category, especially fear. I have never considered using the words fear and curiosity in the same sentence. To me, curiosity comes with anticipation and excitement. I would not put FEAR in that same category. As long as we allow that fear to continue to shape our actions, we find ourselves trapped instead of experiencing life at its fullest and that does not sound like anticipation! Curiosity allows us to step back from the emotion and view it more objectively. Once we can curiously explore the fear, we uncover beliefs that may have served us at one time and kept us safe, but now are keeping us caged and restricted from moving forward.

Today I am aware of several of my fears that I am allowing to shape my actions. I‘m here to say that the view from the cubby-hole under my desk is a pretty restricted view. It’s time for me to explore my fears with curiosity and anticipation, and decide if they no longer serve me. I want to find a different view and get on down the road of living life with joy and passion!

Today’s practice:

What is one fear you have that you realize is keeping you immobilized? Take it out of the cubby, shed some light on it and examine it with curiosity. Come along on the journey!

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