Fear is one of the most interesting and complex human emotions. You can’t fight against it, it comes without warning and it transforms even the mightiest of leaders into a crumbling mess of pure and raw humanity. Fear is visceral and real, you can’t block fear, because fear is one of the most basic emotions encoded into any living thing. We are afraid because we want to live, we want to perpetuate our genes. Fear helps us preserve ourselves because fear appears to stop us from doing things that could lead to our demise. Fear should not be considered a weakness, because to be afraid is to be alive.
Now don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that you should do nothing and simply succumb to fear, no, you should manage your fear and act despite of it. But you should never try to eradicate fear completely, you should never try to eliminate fear from your life. Because on the one hand you will not be able to succeed, and on the second hand, if by some miracle, you could actually do it, at the very same time you would be giving up on one of the most important parts of your personality.
Fear is what makes us human and so you should learn to cherish fear and to use it to the fullest. Fear is important because through fear we are able to see the world around us clearer. When we are afraid, our senses are working at their maximum capacity. Fear means that our body and our mind are prepared to do whatever is necessary in order to protect ourselves. Without it, we would be charging head on into bullets and jumping off high buildings and doing all sorts of other crazy shit…
But still, I have to wonder, why so many people today are doing reckless things? Why, if fear is so important and powerful, why is it that so many people risk their lives for stupid and ridiculous reasons? Why do we have so many teens that die falling from tall buildings while trying to take a picture, why are so many of us subjecting ourselves to incredibly dangerous situations? Why is that? Why are human beings starting to be more and more reckless and more prone to putting themselves in unwinnable scenarios…?
The answer is very simple and very sad at the same time. People do all of these things because they fear something more than the things themselves. People risk their lives climbing a top building to take a picture not because they don’t fear heights or the possibility of dying. Yes, they fear those things, but they fear even more anonymity, they fear even more the idea that they are not in the spotlight or appreciated by others. Next time you see somebody doing something stupid just to get your attention, understand that they fear the lack of attention more than their own demise… And that is simply tragic.
In conclusion, think about what you are scared by, think about all those things that keep you up at night. But don’t think about them as character flaws that you need to correct, no, accept them, embrace them, and understand that they are a part of your inner core and that you have to learn how to put them to use. Fear can ruin your life or it can enhance it, the only thing that you have to do is to accept that it is normal to feel that way. We are all afraid, even the most powerful of us, the most imposing. The true mark of a leader is to be willing to accept that he is afraid. Only when you accept fear you can start to embrace it and to put it to good use. Be afraid, and be happy that you are afraid!