“Fear is not real. The only place that fear can exist is in our thoughts of the future. It is a product of our imagination, causing us to fear things that do not at present and may not ever exist. That is near insanity. Do not misunderstand me danger is very real but fear is a choice.”

I love this quote and probably read it several times a week, especially now that I am ‘public’ in my writing. What is it about fear that holds us captive from doing what we were called to do?

Is it because people will judge or criticize us? Perhaps. Being judged or criticized is not a feeling I like to have, however, I have come to realize that those are sometimes the times that cause me to grow as a person and as a writer.

I remember when my youngest son was three years old. He would do something that he would get in trouble for, and I use to give him the option of either a spanking or sitting in time out. He would always pick the spanking. He rather have his punishment and get it over. He hated being confined to sitting in a chair for any length of time. So once I figured this out, his punishment was usually the time out chair.

Our timeout chair was a little kid rocking chair that we picked up at a yard sale, and it sat in the corner of the living room. On one occasion, after he had gotten in trouble I sent him to the timeout chair and told him to sit there until I said he could get out. I then went upstairs to finish putting away laundry only to come back down minutes later to find him gone………..as well as the timeout chair.

As I walked around the house looking for him, I found him in the playroom playing with his toys, all while sitting in the timeout chair. He had carried that chair around with him until he got where he needed to be and waited for me to release him. As he looked up at me and smiled, I couldn’t help but laugh, realizing this was something his older three siblings had never thought of, and it was quite genius. Back then my son had no fear of what might happen. He wasn’t controlled by fear of getting in further trouble; he took a risk to see if he could adhere to but adjust the rules, all while setting out to achieve his goal, even if back then his goal was to play with his legos.

I have thought of that story a lot lately, as I venture out on my own in this new phase of my life. And I am reminded that we can’t let fear hold us captive in pursuing our goals and our dreams. We have to take risks to achieve what is in us.

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