Posts Tagged ‘fear’


I’m a little frustrated with myself! Great opening line to a post! There will be no pictures, only raw letters today. This post is dedicated to everyone, including and especially myself, who let excuses get in the way of their Dream!

It annoys me so much to watch talented people (yes you too) waste their ability because of some fear or whatever. Now, I’m a Christian, and in my circles, the excuses border on amazing! “I’m just being humble” is one good one… Hello? Jesus hit the WHOLE WORLD, and is STILL doing it!! Maybe your definition of ‘humility’ is flawed. It’s not the “ability to blend in and do live invisibly” like we’ve defined it, but it’s the basis upon which we do anything. Being noticed is not a sign of pride… It’s a sign of being noticed! Whether it’s for something great or stupid, people are noticed all the time. If what you want to do will result in some notice, that doesn’t mean you weren’t humble, it means people found it worth noticing. If they talk, well then unless you’re the one telling them what to say, you’re not some diva in the making, you’re worth talking about.

What about this one: “It’s not the right time”. Just great! You’ve just confessed to having in your possession some kind of device that gives you specifics about when you must “become something”, or when to take advantage of an opportunity. I swear if you have something like that in your pocket, I will be jealous! Nobody has the “right time” written into their DNA. All that everybody has, is TIME! As in, right now! As in, today. As in, HELLO! It is ridiculous that we have this thing called a brain, and we decide it needs breaks, as if we were over-using it in the first place (not!). Nothing on this Earth can give you a reason to wait for your Dream to come true. The only things that can take time are the processes towards your Dream happening, but they are part of the Dream! The only time that is truly bad for any kind of attempt, is when you’re dead! When you die, it is guaranteed that you won’t get anything done!

How’s this one: “I’m not ready”. Well whose fault is that??? You’re “not ready” because you’re probably not doing anything to be ready. I used to think I needed to read a bunch of poetry before I could write any. And yes, it does help to expose yourself to as much as you can. However, exposure is not what grants you permission to act on something! I went to one poetry event, heard a few poets, and it was decided! It didn’t take months, it didn’t take years, or many books on style and technique, it took a little kick, and I responded to it!

What is a “little kick”? It’s a moment of inspiration. It’s a place where you feel “I want to do THAT as well”. It could be a dream you had one night, or something you heard, even a movie (ever notice how movies that highlight creativity just make you wanna do what you saw?)… whatever the “little kick”, you have to note that it isn’t a permanent source of inspiration/energy! Basically, it will dissipate, and will no longer inspire you after a while when left alone. If you don’t act on it, you can never be ready. Readiness is for those whose mindsets and actions are aligned with a purpose. It’s not even about knowing everything there is to know, it’s just simply being in the right mental position to respond to opportunity!

Oh wait, you’re “shy”? Is that the problem? Unfortunately, there’s no cure for shyness. Yes I said it! It’s not something that “gets better”, personally I don’t even know how it exists in this world. In fact, I think it’s a device we’ve come up with. Shyness is the ability to look at yourself, and be absolutely blind to what you can do right, for the sake proving some imaginary statistic that you will mess up whatever you put your hands to. Shyness sees $99.95 and says “I’m 5 cents short of $100… I’m broke!” So it doesn’t spend any money! Shyness will ignore your talents, and make you look at failures you haven’t even committed yet.

In short, shyness is the worst form of perfectionism you could ever live with! You should RUN from that description ( just make sure you run with your head up and shoulders straight! Need to see where you’re going.)!

It can’t allow any mistakes, so it makes you do nothing. Huh?? Yes, because of that earlier statement, in an even shorter form: Shyness makes you stupid! Of course I had to hit the nail on the head. I was shy to say that, I wanted to say “makes you do stupid things”. That would’ve been more politically correct, but I realised being polite is the reason people aren’t honest anymore with each other, or themselves. We say “I want to be humble” instead of saying “I’m crap scared of how people will respond”. We say “It’s not the right time” instead of saying “I’m anxious about when to do this, and I really don’t have full security right now”. We say “I’m not ready” instead of saying “I’ve missed opportunities to grow in my ability, and even more, to expose it, and all those times have made me feel less sure of myself”…or even better, “I’ve been lazy with my time”!

The only way to beat all this is to JUST DO IT! Just start working on that Dream, Start that blog, get out that pen and write a poem, talk to someone about painting classes…what the heck just start painting! It’s a business? Ok, before you even talk about money, how about defining what you want to do first? How about talking to people who can encourage you in your journey for clarity on your vision. The money issue, comes AFTER clarity. Don’t worry about things you shouldn’t worry about yet. When it’s time, then it’s time.

The world isn’t actually watching you as closely as you think they are. Nobody pays attention to mediocrity! If you’re scared of criticism, then what you’re really saying s you’re scared of doing anything, because the only way to avoid criticism, is to do nothing!

You will attract attention the moment you do something different. Get over it.

You will be told some negative things in your journey, or even worse, receive some praise (to all you pessimists). Get over it.

You will have times you’re not sure of anything you’re doing. That’s part of life. Get over it.

You might fail…many times. Get over it.

Oh and last thing, when you succeed… GET OVER IT!

There’s too much at stake with your life. Some people will get their “little kick” from watching you do well. Don’t deprive them.

Don’t deprive yourself.

Don’t be shy!

Begin.

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ME.

Posted: July 15, 2011 in Deeper Things, Poetic Paths
Tags: , , , , , , ,


I always thought it easy to believe
That much of what I lacked was just that:
Lacking.

Believing I had no opportunity
For I had no thing to enter opportunity with.
This was what I thought.

My lines were short
For shortage of sense.
Sense of zero at 100!

Should this be the status quo?
Have I been born for the purpose of
Not having purpose?
Can I be liberated for this empty space?
Wouldn’t a prison be better?
For at least my sentence would’ve been for a
Reason.

Yet I AM bound!
Bound to the search.
Bound to a desire.
Bound to a feeling.
Bound to a fear.

Fear that my beliefs were false.
Fear that I always had something in me.
Fear that I’ve wasted my years fearing.

Fearing me

Me.

Two letters that represent everything I know
Two letters that embody an existence.
A section of the universe wrapped up in flesh and blood,
And thoughts of more, for false belief of less.

In me is fear,
And it is full!
In me is wonder,
And it is full!

Complete.

Total.

Full.

All.

Me.

I.

.


This had BETTER work!

Have you ever had an idea/desire that just appears ridiculously impossible, or at the very least improbable? Or even just improper? I know I’ve had my fair share of those, and continue to have them. They’re always fun at first. They invade your mind, filling you with all these possibilities and feelings (the warm fuzzy type). In this stage you’re on top of the world and in some cases, you even add a little more bounce to your step! What a beautiful time…until a shocking and unexpected thought hits you: Wait…do I have to DO this? How the heck?

SNAP!

The easiest part of an idea, is having the idea! It just dawns upon you in a moment, with usually little to no effort expended. Sometimes it’s brilliant as it is, sometimes it grows as you think about it; sometimes it scares you, sometimes it uplifts you. Most times however, you leave it long enough, it will plague you with the question: So NOW what? Having the idea is fine, that’s a result of having a working mind! You should be grateful!

The second easiest part, is losing the idea! You heard it! Why? The problem with having an idea, is eventually you have to tell somebody… And that’s when the ‘fit hits the shan’. People rarely see things the way you do, or can fully grasp something that’s so real in your mind. I’m telling you, if you haven’t heard all the reasons why your idea will not make it in your head, then I’m sure somebody will be willing to tell you. Your memory is already against you here. Leaving an idea brewing, doesn’t actually brew it. Ideas don’t brew, they fizzle out. They only brew as you apply more focus, but otherwise, with all the activity you probably already take part in, you’ll lose it! Add the lovely ‘counter-questions’ from the people you may tell, and you have enough ammunition to obliterate any chance you have…

But that’s if you accept it!

My advice to battle negative comments, negative situations, negative possibilities, negative anything, is to DO IT ANYWAYS!!!

For an idea, there is nothing more benefitting, than action. Taking steps towards your desired reality. I have really fallen for the tricks before, and seen how doing it anyways has helped me get more progress and momentum under my belt. You owe it to yourself to do it anyways! After the joy of discovery, you can’t rob yourself of seeing this thing happen. It gives you even more energy to try things out, to look for ways of making it happen; all that’s stopping you is the gap between Conception and Birth!

Once a woman is pregnant, all she has to do is stay alive, like she always has. That baby inside her will grow whether she wants it to or not. How healthy the child is, will depend on her lifestyle (how you nurture your idea, how you get creative with it, what you believe when you think/hear it); yet even then there comes a time the baby has to come out of her! She can’t decide “Nah, I don’t feel like giving birth.” It has to happen. Yet we think somewhere that maybe our plan is stupid, or it’s impossible, or it doesn’t make economic sense, or it’s in a language we don’t understand (huh?)…and so we abort it!

Opposition from yourself or elsewhere is guaranteed. It’s a natural product of how we think: differently. So guess what, that opposition is not proof enough that you’ll fail. It’s just proof that people can exercise their opinion. Great for them.
Do it anyways!

There may be a thought that tells you some people will never accept the new proposal you’ve thought of for a business venture or a project. Guess what, you’re right! Some people will never accept it…and in fact, you’re doing them a favour by leaving that baby in your stomach, because then they don’t even have to disagree.
Do it anyways!

It is quite possible that your idea could really upset some of the systems you and those around you have grown used to. Well, I bet you those systems were old anyways, and you could have the answer that everyone wants to beat the repetitive boredom around them.
Do it anyways!

A legendary ice hockey player named Wayne Gretzky once said “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take”! That is such a painful truth! You think you’ll be a loser for failure? Well a loser has done a lot more than the guy who didn’t even play the game! At least the loser tried!

Of course there is a lot of risk in doing something new. As we just read, the chance of missing the mark is 100% when you do nothing! What do you have to lose? Your reputation? If it’s a reputation you built by ‘playing it safe’, then it’s probably not one you’d inspire your children to achieve. Imagine saying “Son, aim for tree-trunks! Go all the way to the middle!
Not very invigorating is it?

Having ideas and doing nothing, is like taking a gun and finishing all your bullets on a target…then realizing your bullets were blanks! All the sound effects, none of the impact!

SO DO IT ANYWAYS!

Over.


At some point in my life, I noticed a few traits within me that I never really liked seeing from anyone else, yet they were alive and well in my own mind. I saw how I sometimes treated people and would later say to myself, “Why did I do that?” with much confusion in my heart. I would be insulting, degrading, and extremely harsh in my remarks to some people; not being able to handle incompetency, or lack of understanding. Now, I must say that I’m already a pretty blunt person (as some of my posts may portray), and I believe in ‘saying it like it is’.  Of course, that was my excuse.

Unfortunately, doing what I did was not the final nail in the coffin of my realisation.  What really got me thinking was how other people responded to the way I was.  I noticed a few traits within them as well.  On the one hand, they did what I asked them to do; completing tasks, or learning a skill I required (demanded) of them. Yet on the other hand, they resisted me in most forms of relationship outside the tasks at hand. They were afraid of me. It is then that I reached the conclusion that even though the work was getting done, it wasn’t out of people being productive, it was because I made them do it! They weren’t inspired, innovative, energetic, or even happy… They were just jumping because they had to…or else! Their incentive was not progress, it was survival. They weren’t trying to please me, they were trying to appease me.

What was happening here? I wasn’t a leader… I was a manipulator. I thought I was in control, and I was right; just not in control of me. I controlled everybody else with my temper. And so it is with all ‘manipulators’. They become gods demanding sacrifices at their altars ‘or else’. That ‘or else’ can be different for everyone, but in my case, it was “or else I’ll tell you how terrible your performance was…and you know i do that well…because I tell it like it is!” Who wouldn’t want to avoid that?

Truth of the matter is, I probably got it from somewhere. We all did. Wasn’t it our mom who said “clean up your room or else…”? I’m sure you were in the room with me when dad told us to pass our tests with flying colours, or else he’d lock up all our toys. All of these seemingly minor occurrences were the seed-bed of habits and thought patterns that would probably change the way we acted, especially when we were exposed to the extreme forms of them. Parents or siblings that showed capacity to abuse us, got us into “abuse avoidance mode”. That abuse could have been verbal, physical, or emotional; but when we knew it was coming, we did everything to avoid it…including doing well! Or else dad got angry (and we always knew what that meant), or mom would be sad and cry and complain about how we don’t appreciate her. It was all a form of manipulation, disguised as parenting!

A manipulator puts a person/people in a place where they are no longer doing something out of their free will, but out of fear. Not only that, a manipulator messes with your whole concept of incentives. Your rewards aren’t personally motivated anymore, because when you’re under a manipulator, survival is success! Manipulators think people love them, truth is, people are scared of them! They are masters of deception, because they get you to think you’re motivated, but actually you’re anxious! What they do is very similar to some torture techniques (OUCH!), where all they offer is relief (from the negative emotion they’re inflicting), as an incentive for co-operation. Yes they can reward in better ways, but they make sure their best form of motivation is your escape negative emotion.

They make brilliant leaders!
They’re usually go-getters (slave-drivers)…
Motivated (highly strung)…
Focused on the vision (abusive if you aren’t)…
Produce excellent results (get what they want)…
Goal-oriented (resulting in loveless conduct)…
And are usually very clear on what they want (or else!!!).

It's YOUR fault this is poorly done! Why can't YOU get it right? What's wrong with YOU?!

If you manipulate like this, I bet people talk behind your back about your flaws more than they confront you… I bet you keep discovering that people are scared of you… I bet you defend yourself when someone highlights your mean tendencies… I bet you would’ve used “accuses you of” instead of “highlights” in the previous statement… I bet you have fewer friends than you’d like… I bet you’ve justified it with how well you’re doing… I bet your successes still don’t cover how you actually want to be more approachable… But I bet you keep sabotaging/undermining that desire with your bad temper!

Those are just the aggressive manipulators! These are the ones that lash out at people, usually a boss (because they are bossy!). People run from them in fear of their random volcanic eruptions…which leave these dark clouds of ash over everybody. You probably work for one, cos with them all you worry about is “I hope I don’t make them angry…” because that’s what they say all the time. They love lines like “I’m getting angry… I’m very disappointed… I don’t understand how you could do this…” I’m sure some of you know a few of those, and none of them is you. You may be right, but there’s another version of the manipulator: Passive.

The passive manipulators are just as bad as the aggressive ones. Same M.O. They put you in a position where their emotions become your master. But they are soooooo clever about it.

Ever meet a person who just seems sad all the time, or has many bouts of depression? Ok maybe you know a lot of people like that, but ask this question: Ever find that you can’t say anything negative to them? Or you have to be really careful about how you confront them? Or have you found yourself almost having to compliment them much more than anyone else? When they’re around you, you feel this need to cheer them up, or make them feel part of the group? Know anybody like that? If you do, then you know a passive manipulator!

The trick is the same, but the expression is different. These manipulators leverage the opposite range of emotions to aggressive manipulators. They’re already low, but make you feel responsible for it! Passive manipulators don’t have the ‘fear factor’ like aggressive ones, but they are quite fearsome in their technique. All the questions I asked two paragraphs ago, are ways of finding out whether someone is passively manipulating you, or if you are a passive manipulator. Usually the goal for someone like this is attention. They want to be seen, or heard, or taken care of, or have things done for them. Encountering someone like this over time, you’ll hear more about their struggles than their victories, and you’ll find yourself trying to cheer them up all the time.

With the aggressive, you fear the blow-up; with the passive, you fear the break-down. Whichever side it is, it’s wrong.

I read an article in Psychology Today that really helped me see this in myself and others. The wording used to describe this manipulation was this:

People who can’t control themselves, control the people around them. When you rely on someone for a positive reflected sense of self, you invariably try to control him/her.” – David Schnark

When your feelings, anxieties, and insecurities are always out of control, they probably control your relationships. You teach people to put up with you all the time. You have to be right in the argument to assert yourself/Wrong in the argument to justify your lack of self-esteem! It’s not fair to the people around you, and it undermines you completely. Manipulation is scary, but so common, because it is common for us to have little control over our emotions, or their manifestations in our character.

Manipulators (speaking to myself as well), you must learn to control yourself! Self-control is a priceless gift to all those around you. Nobody said you can’t be angry, just don’t manipulate people with it. It is YOUR JOB to sort through your emotions…nobody else’s. So refrain from putting that responsibility on others. Stop telling yourself that “they make me angry!” That is the biggest declaration of dependency you could make. You’re not really in charge in that state, your emotions are…and that’s not the best for you or anybody else.

What we need is to decide that our emotions won’t get the best of us, and those around us. It’s not something that changes overnight, but it changes! Really that’s all you need to know… That if you embark on a journey of self-control, you WILL change for the better. Nothing is stopping you, well, nothing except your habit of submission to these habits. You’ve taught yourself to be a slave to your emotions, and now everybody else is! It’s what we grew up seeing, and believing was the best way to do relationship. The only reason it ‘worked’ in those we saw doing it, is probably because you were manipulated into thinking that!

Manipulation starts to end when you think of others more than yourself… When you realise that your style or personality can actually learn new tricks like listening before blowing up, or not blowing up at all… When you learn to speak encouraging words to yourself, and allowing others to affirm something already within you: self-belief. Let people be themselves around you, and where they falter, teach them how to be the best they can be…not how to meet deadlines!

i-Manipulate… when i have no control of myself.

Over.


Fear has a crippling effect on any individual. It can silence you immediately, and even permanently. On top of that, it has this strange ability to morph your entire reality into some hellish existence! I’m telling you, if Fear was an ‘X-men’ character, it would be the one that made you say “they have cool powers, but THAT guy freaks me out completely!” (actually I think there is a character named ‘Fear’ in the X-men! Glad its just a comic.) It can consume you so much that what you see is not what actually is. That’s a scary thought! For a bunch of people – maybe even you – the lives they’re experiencing are the product of their own fears!

The problem is that Fear is a great distractor! It’s the equivalent of that really hot looking guy/girl you see at the mall, who gets you dreaming of all the ‘possibilities’, then you realise you’ve wasted your time and missed about 100 more possible possibilities! How does Fear achieve this? It plays out all these scenarios of failure, falling, rejection, destruction or even death! Even though the last two are pretty similar, Fear makes them look different! You start defining in your imagination, just how bad it could get if you don’t pass, or say the right thing, or wear the right clothes, or make the right decision… You’re filled with all these ‘possibilities’, but none of them have any bearing on your life  right now. Fear blinds you to the biggest possibility you have in front of you: SUCCESS!

This is where Dreaming comes into play, as it also brings with it, ‘possibilities’. But these are of a different kind. Dreams paint the sort of pictures that fly in the face of failure, laughing out loudly (loling) as it fades into the horizon of reality. When I speak of Dreams, I speak of those desires in your heart that just excite you. That’s one of the cool things about them, they excite us, because they involve only us! You see, Fear brings in all these agents and ingredients that are all beyond your control (eg a person who doesn’t like you, or the environment you’re in), but a Dream, is ALL YOU! You being a success, you making the right decisions, you achieving your goals…everything in a Dream is determined by, and revolves around… you guessed it: YOU!

You make your success… You make the right choices… You unlock the potential within… You find the strength to make things happen! With a Dream, it’s all on you! Sure, there are relationships that help along the way, but only if you are in the right state of awareness. There will definitely be situations you have no control over that will affect you, but you have to make the right decisions about how you move forward. When you have a Dream, not even the hardships of life can excuse you! As bad as they can be, they only leave behind memories, not disasters!

Dreaming is quite daring, because life has so many loopholes to get through, unexpected turns, and even people who don’t like you. It’s daring because the world offers ample examples of people who want, but don’t get, those who desire, but don’t achieve. However, with all these facts, where would we be without Dreams? It was someone’s Dream to go to the moon. I mean, who dreamed up skinny jeans anyways? Everything we touch and use is someone’s Dream come true.

And there is the place many people fail to arrive: a Dream come true.

You have a responsibility to your Dream. Like a good parent, you need to nurture your Dream, allow it to grow. You even have to change things about yourself to accommodate this Dream. That isn’t easy, but it is necessary. Fear works against these processes of bringing a Dream to life, because if it’s a distractor, then it’s also a delayer. Sounds a lot like ‘Delilah’, you know…the chick from the Bible, who cut Samson’s hair, making him lose all his strength?? THAT Delilah! Watch out for that chick, cos she’s HOT! Fear will sap you of your energy, putting all your creative juices into failures and not successes. Your Dream requires focus, priority, forward thinking and flexibility. You’ll need to be in it for the long haul my friend. As you do what is necessary, your Dream rewards you, opening up doors, birthing relationships, and teaching you lessons. You mature as you grow in your Dream.

Mature Dreamers. Those are the ones whose Dreams come true! They may experience Fear, but don’t allow it to delay or distract them.

Those who fear, don’t dare!

I dare you!

DREAM!