on fear

When I write on here, my stress and fears are usually in the context of a shitty long run or a perpetual Sunday morning hangover. And even though I’ve never been that keen on resolutions, I have been thinking about being more honest and open. I am pretty outgoing, but I am a total introvert. I’m private. I’m stubborn and independent to the point that it sometimes doesn’t work in my favor. 

I’ve been thinking for a while about being constantly described as super easy-going, gowiththeflow, and chill. Whenever I hear these adjectives that describe me, I can’t help but be a bit confused. Quite honestly, I often feel the exact opposite. I stress out a lot. I worry. I pull apart sentences and over-analyze. I try incredibly hard to be positive and optimistic, but I’m not sure if I’m naturally an optimistic person. Instead, I make a conscious effort to try to see things differently, to slow down, to breathe. It isn’t always easy.

And even though I may seem super easy-going, a ton of things scare me. Being in new social situations, taking on new projects at work, booking vacations by myself, being the single person in a crowd of happy, loving couples, training for a marathon, writing personal blog posts (oh heeey)…. these things scare me.

And yet, what I’ve also learned is that fear drives me. In some weird way, I’m not scared of it. I’ve rarely done something that has been totally out of my comfort zone and have been hurt by it. In fact, every scary situation I put myself in has only led to more personal growth, and usually an incredible experience.

And that’s why I keep fighting fear. Someone heard about my solo trip to Costa Rica next month and told me I was “very brave.” And I really wanted to respond saying, “Actually, no. I’m scared shitless.” And I am.  I’m really scared to travel alone. What if I get lost? What if I can’t find any cheap places to stay and sleep on the side of the road? What if…I don’t have fun? And yet, there is another (wiser) part of me that knows this won’t the case, and that I’ll figure it out. That I’ll be fine. And that it’ll be an amazing trip.

To be a bit cliché, I’ve simply realized that hey, I too am afraid. And get stressed. And have many days when I wake up on the wrong side of the bed. But that doesn’t mean these negative emotions have to lead to more negativity. I’ll take it and be aware of it, and then fight it. Have it drive me further.

Because what scares me more than my own fear…. is not doing anything about it.

IMG_1241

Staged. Not scared at all.

 

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About Laura

marketing director at Possible. formerly at Greatist. Still running, finding zen, and searching for the perfect bloody mary.

Posted on December 22, 2012, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. Love this and the pic!

  2. Amen. All the best things in my life have come from facing fear head on and doing things that challenge me. Meeting my husband came from packing up my car at the age of 21 and driving west to Oregon (not knowing anyone)….I was scared shitless but on the other side of that wave of fear brought my happiest year of living. And now as we are about to make a very random move to Asheville, NC for no other reason than to have an adventure and try something new, I find myself chewing on fear again. I don’t handle ambiguity very well…I like to be in control…but here I am putting myself in another one of these experiences that require giving up a lot of control and seeing what will happen. I’m excited but oh, I’m scared too. I’m confident that all the best things are on the other side of fear though. So easy to settle in life and just get caught up in the every day…the comfortable…good for you for getting out there and trying new things! Oh, and for a long time, I’ve found my writing voice through being vulnerable and real and raw with my posts but the past few months have changed me a bit and now Vulnerable has started to scare me like nothing else…but glad for pushing through that too. And glad you decided to write from your heart here. My favorite kinds of posts to read.

    • thank you so much amanda, your comment means so much! And it’s great to hear your story, too…I am sure Asheville will be nothing but totally wonderful. Do let me know how everything goes (:

  3. I admire your ability to face fear head on. I’m not so good about doing that sometimes. But, I guess, others see things in us that we can never see within ourselves. I admire your spontaneity, independence, etc as well as your ability to seamlessly adapt rather than needing a checkbox list to exist (like some of us). maybe you need your checkboxes, too, but you don’t at least outwardly express your stress over them.

    Great post and have a great trip!

  4. I felt like you were describing me in this post! I’m definitely a planner and worrier and an introvert. Sounds like things have worked in your favor and that you have embraced these tendencies that are a part of you, I definitely need to do that! Happy holidays!

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