What are we afraid of?
We’re afraid of the dark. We’re afraid of natural disasters. Sometimes we’re afraid of feeling afraid, and we always fear The Unknown.
Think about it. We strive to maintain an emotional ‘status quo’. Our soul likes balance, quiet, The Known.
Most of us tend to avoid emotional roller coasters, for the sake of our feelings of security. When we take risks, we allow ourselves the possibility of failing and therefore feeling worse than we currently feel. Which is why most of us would avoid taking risks, so as to avoid feeling down and possibly putting our self-esteem at risk. But there’s a caveat; the more we postpone this essential risk-taking, the more we harm our self esteem.
I’m glad you asked.
Think about the last opportunity you’ve missed. It might’ve been a lady who you’d wanted to meet, a deal which you’d wanted to close, anything really. Ask yourself, “how did it feel to not have talked to that cute brunette a few weeks ago, even though I really wanted to”?
Doubtless, it felt like shit; but since we’re aiming at specifying this vague emotion, I’ll use the word “disappointment”.
Again, glad you asked.
According to Google, disappointment is the “sadness or displeasure caused by the non-fulfilment of one's hopes or expectations.”
So you’d set your hopes or expectations; you’d told yourself “I want to meet that woman” or “I want to close that deal”. Even if you’d rationalized it a heartbeat later with some lame excuse like “she’s not my type”, you still wanted her. And your expectations, probably formed by yourself (“I want a girlfriend”) as well as the environment (your friend bragging about being Paris Hilton’s playmate), caused your disappointment. You didn’t meet these hopes or expectations, because you’ve let your fear rather than your desire boss you around. You’ve let yourself down, and it made you feel like shit. And yet, you keep doing it to yourself, in hope of maintaining your self-esteem. Really, Bro?
When we experience fear, we fear the unknown.
But we are also given an opportunity for excitement.
Because fear gives us two choices:
Subject to it, and you’ll end up feeling like shit.
Embrace it and dub it “opportunity!” knowing that in the worst case scenario, you’ll avoid that unpleasant feeling of shittiness, knowing that at least you gave it your best shot, and in better cases it’ll lead to an exhilarating sense of excitement when she gives you her number now and maybe some head next week.
Think about your first kiss: What would have happened had you not taken that risk of rejection? And how did you feel during that sublime intermingling of delicious saliva and human tongue? Wasn’t that exquisite? Isn’t it worth erring on the side of your excitement rather than your doubts, leaning into your fear, knowing its full of opportunity for excitement and embracing it as if it were that cute brunette down the street, rather than feel disappointed over and over again?