Fear. We’ve all felt it before. The fear of spiders, the fear of heights, even the fear of missing the bus. Fear is what has kept our species alive for thousands of years and it’s a critical evolutionary trait that has allowed us to protect ourselves and those around us for generations. But, that was in a time where the stakes were much higher with life and death hanging in the balance of these decisions.
Nowadays, however, our reality is entirely different, especially in the United States. Our fear is no longer rooted in the danger of serious injuries or death but is often found in the possibility of the unknown. We fear for our future and what is yet to come, and in turn, we become anxious and stressed for what may or may not happen. In other words, we often fear things that are solely based on in our imagination. Instead of staying rooted in the reality that is in front of us, we become distracted by the possibility of imaginary scenarios.
Take, for example, college applications, I’ve caught myself too often daydreaming and worrying about decisions that aren’t due to come out for months. Countless scenarios play in my head of me reading an acceptance letter then the feeling of rejection and misery after reading that I’ve been denied. All of which are completely fictitious and only serve to distract me from more relevant tasks. My application has already been submitted, but, I am still controlled by the fear of what is yet to come. I’ve realized that there is no point in worrying about things that I no longer have control over. I was spending more energy and time imagining scenarios that may never occur and realized I had placed myself in a position worse than where I began. A true waste of time.
While a healthy dose of fear can be helpful and motivating, allowing it to control you will never end well. So, going forward, I challenge you all to free yourselves from the oppressive nature of fear and begin to live in the now instead of the future or the past. Think of your life as a ship sailing in the ocean and yourself as the captain of the ship. If you, the captain, are too focused on calculating and imagining what dangers lie ahead you may miss the iceberg lying right in front of you. While that may be a little dramatic, the point is to not live life afraid of what’s to come but to live with a passion for what is here and now.
This article was inspired by Sadhguru, I highly recommend checking out videos of his teachings and his perspective on life. Below I’ve linked a couple of videos that I thought were helpful.