Sunday, December 20, 2015

Fear and Growth

by Janet M. Shlaes, Ph.D.

“One can choose to go back toward safety or forward toward growth. Growth must be chosen again and again; fear must be overcome again and again.”  ~ Abraham Maslow

When life gets challenging, do you lean toward avoiding fear or embracing growth? Choosing to avoid fear keeps you trapped in the illusion of the safety of the status quo; it also consumes your precious life energy. Choosing growth facilitates the expansion of both your comfort and competence zones. Committing to growth requires a willingness to embrace and move through fear and the normal discomfort of the unknown. Choosing to recognize, embrace and move through fear is a prerequisite for your ongoing evolution in all life arenas. When I was much younger, I was often inclined to take what at the time seemed like the safe route. With the wisdom of experience and time, I came to discover that embracing what appeared to be the riskier route consistently led to wonderful adventures, discoveries, relationships, skill development and positive results beyond my imagination. I learned that all I needed to do was shift my perception of risk and fear from the entire picture to that of a few of the variables in the data set of my current reality. I invite you to try on embracing growth and the gifts that can be gained from moving through unrealistic fears. I invite you to embrace the words of Eleanor Roosevelt and “Do one thing every day that scares you.”


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