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Updated: Aug 20, 2021

Fear has always been my most faithful companion. I have always been fearful of everything I have tried or done, but miraculously…I’m still here and now out of FEAR I’m writing.

Yes! Isn’t it ironic that a person full of fears is going to tell you that you can still pursue your dreams, you can still try, you can fall and get back up? You know why I want to confront my fears? Because since they are always with me, they are going to see me succeed (even if I fall a million times); I will get up and try as many times as I can! Because I am not a quitter, I am not a loser, and I am capable of doing anything I put my mind and heart into…and SO ARE YOU!

Google defines fear as “an unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain, or a threat”. Now re-read that definition!! Can we all agree that fear is an unpleasant emotion? Heck yeah! Now see the rest, that emotion is caused by a belief… Who’s belief? OURS! So… what we need to do in order to destroy our fears is to start believing in OURSELVES! What do you care if others are going to criticize you? They will criticize no matter what you do, whether it is something they want you to do or whether it is something that YOU want to do. Don’t you think it is better to be criticized by the things you wanted to do? At least you can take some feedback and decide if you’ll make changes on your approach or if you decide to ignore their opinions. I say ignore!

It is normal to fear the unknown, but you should still try if it is something that you feel in your heart is calling for you. It is normal to fear failure, but the one thing I have learned is that without failing we won’t learn and grow…so bring up all the failures! It is normal to fear rejection, but EVERYONE has been rejected at some point in life, and guess what? It is up to you if you use the rejections of others as steppingstones or if you allow their “stones” to actually hit you. It is normal to fear disappointment because many people (especially friends, family, and loved ones) have disappointed us, and it hurts! Heck it hurts! But if we are still breathing it is because there is something more for us along the way. We cannot control other people’s reactions or behaviors, but we can control ours.

It is normal to feel fearful, but the best way to get rid of the fear is by believing in yourself and just follow your gut feeling. Don’t allow your emotions to control you…learn, grow, become stronger, and start living! Don’t allow your fears to control your life and the decisions you make. The fear should be the fuel to try.

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We have all made mistakes at some point in life. No human being is exempt of making mistakes. But it is part of the journey of living and growing. Without falling, you won’t learn how to get up. Without getting back up you won’t learn how to manage certain difficulties or obstacles. Therefore, making mistakes is important and necessary, otherwise, how will we learn anything?

The fact that you have made a mistake does not mean you need to carry it for the rest of your life. You shouldn’t be pointed out or pay for your mistakes as a death sentence, unless (of course) you have killed someone or have done something that the law requires you to be sentenced for those mistakes. But in here I’m taking about regular mistakes such as to choose the wrong career, making poor decisions in your teen years, hurting someone you love with your words or actions, even cheating, or dating the wrong person. Every experience that we face in life is there to teach us a lesson and the purpose is to grow and learn. From every mistake we make there is always a lesson behind it, and that will give us the experience required for our souls to grow; it is up to us to actually look for the lesson and to actually learn from the experiences.

Don’t be so hard on yourself for the mistakes you’ve made. If you are truly regretful of the consequences of your mistakes, then make the necessary amendments in order to fix things as much as you can. There are certain situations in which mistakes are too big that you can’t fix things, but at least you can express that you are regretful of the bad decisions that you made. Talk and be clear with the people you care for; let them know that you now understand their hurt, their pain, and that you are truly sorry. Know that compassion will always win any battle.

The fact that I say that we shouldn’t carry ourselves dragging a load of regrets around doesn’t mean that we can go around hurting people and then act like nothing happened… “Oh! Because everyone makes mistakes!” NO! That’s not learning! That is minimizing the hurt you caused due to the mistakes you made and move on without remorse. Mistakes should be addressed! If you genuinely care and if you truly learned the lessons behind your mistakes, the right thing to do is to address it with the people that matters the most to you. What is there to lose? Asking for forgiveness and assuming responsibility can only make you a person with strong morality and character. It will be a way to close the cycle of the mistake and turn the experience into a step of growth and development; not only for you but also for the people involved or affected by your actions.

One of my favorite book authors is John Maxwell and, in his book, Failing Forward he Quotes Dr. William Mayo: “Lord, deliver me from the man who never makes a mistake, and also from the man who makes the same mistake twice”. We all need to make mistakes in order to learn, grow, and develop ourselves, but we need to be careful not to continuously repeat the same mistakes over and over. That is something I have been a victim of, making the same mistake multiple times, but I guess, in my case, I get to learn after multiple tries; but later, rather than sooner, I finally get to learn and grow…and that is also OK! The idea is that mistakes are necessary for us to grow and learn, but learning is not a competition, it is a personal thing and a process. Accept your process, acknowledge your growth, and most importantly forgive yourself for the mistakes that you’ve made that are causing a burden in your heart. The most difficult thing to do is to forgive ourselves…but that's a whole new subject.

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I am seated at the meeting and while I am there my mind is somewhere else. Picture this, I am looking at their faces, their expressions, their lips moving, but I cannot hear a word they say. I feel no connection to them or the subjects they discuss. I feel nothing for what they talk about. Not an inch of enthusiasm. Not a bit of passion. I feel like an intruder in these mandatory meetings, where I actually don’t belong. It's kind of ironic because usually an intruder WANTS to be intruding, but what I really want to do is to run away! Simply get up and walk out.

Then, it is my turn to speak. To talk about what I have been working on. To discuss what I will work on. And in those fractions of seconds I think to myself “What the hell am I supposed to say? There is not much to say, besides the fact that I have been thinking about everything else BUT this meeting”. Even though I have no clue of what I’m going to say, still, I speak out and try to be as brief and as professional as possible, pretending to be busy and enjoying the work I do on a daily basis. So I came up with a quick summary of what I did last week (which was basically nothing) and a quick summary of what I plan to do this week (which is also basically nothing). However, I make it sound like I am super busy. Everyone seems to agree on the perception I have projected (of me being very busy) and the meeting continues.

Everything is so boring! I have no challenge, nothing new to learn, not a single bit of excitement! Nothing! It is like Blah! I feel like I am literally floating (touching the sealing) and that the sealing is not letting me fly higher. I have been feeling like this for years now. Don’t get me wrong, I am grateful for my job. I have a stable job and a decent salary. I have been blessed because the recession never affected me or my family. But what I am complaining about is the lack of growth, the lack of challenge that I have to deal with on a daily basis. It's like my thoughts, my potential, my growth, and my creativity have been locked down in a drawer that nobody wants to open. This has gotten me to the point that I am running out of air inside that drawer! I need to breathe! I really need to start breathing.

(Written on 03/03/2014)

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