Besides all the obvious things, there is actually just one: fear.
It kills too many dreams, relationships, your vibe, and everything else in between. And most importantly, fear kills you in the end.
What life taught me is that people are mostly afraid of two things: life and the truth.
You know that feeling when we think that excessive worrying will protect us from bad things? That is one of the least useful acts we can think of, yet, it is so hard to stop doing this to ourselves. Constant and useless worries can cost us our well-being and health.
Everyone is too busy worrying about accidents and diseases they can die from, but hardly anyone thinks of what causes diseases (in most cases) in the first place.
What if someone told you your health is entirely up to you?
What if you believed something like that?
We worry about tomorrow. When tomorrow comes, we worry about the next day. It goes on and on, and some of us never escape the vicious circle. Hence we’ve never really lived; we barely exist. We call it a life, but we will check with our neighbors what they think about it first thing in the morning. That is a death sentence disguised in life insurance—certainly not a life.
I would say worrying about what others think is pretty much ingrained in our society and by far the biggest fear of them all—mostly in Western society—in addition to fear of disease.
Why would it matter what anyone else but you think of you? Do they pay your bills? If the answer is no, you shouldn’t give others such power—a power to choose your life instead of you.
We also shouldn’t give the power of creating our opinion to anyone we love. I’ll tell you why. Because love can be gone one day. That lover or best friend we trust the most could disappoint us or leave us one day. We will be left with those same (negative) thoughts someone created instead of us, and it can take years to get rid of them in order to create our own beliefs. People cross as many of our boundaries as we allow them to.
We owe ourselves the love that we so openly give to people who don’t know what to do with it.
Try to love yourself first and see what happens. I promise you will experience a whole new world inside an old world. It will be worth it because you are worth it.
All the ordeals we come across, their job is actually to make us stronger and to make us see things from a different perspective. The only way to grow is to challenge yourself, and if you don’t challenge yourself, life may do it instead. Not to punish you, only to awaken you.
Most people start living their lives when they are born, while others start at the finish line.
I hit it twice. Oddly enough, the first one was a battle between life and death after a car accident, and the second one was an experience of a different nature—but it has changed me for the good. Well, not quite right away, but hey, if we knew then what we know now…life would be too easy. And humdrum too, I guess.
What makes us fully alive are all the things that we like to do, things we don’t even know we want to do, songs that we like to listen to, songs that we haven’t heard yet, trying out new things without planning too much, and everything that forces us to step out of the comfort zone. In order to grow, we must face our fear and overcome it. Doing the same thing and hanging out with the same people will not make us grow, no matter how much we click.
Some have found meaning in their lives by living on the edge. That doesn’t mean we have to abandon our old self and start doing risky things. We don’t need to outperform ourselves, but we have to feel that our life is ours, period. It means only that we are not afraid to jump into the “water” without someone guiding us. This is how I did it, many times…and I survived. Not only did I survive, but it also changed my perception of fear.
Most of my 20s were spent without much planning—I put myself in unfamiliar situations and places and just went with the flow. And guess what, that flow helped me to grow. Moving abroad, knowing no one but myself, helped me to grow as a person and start living courageously. To live with less fear than I used to live. Fear could limit us. And limited life doesn’t sound like happiness and freedom. This we can see from these past months while being under lockdown—and hopefully, we can learn something from it.
Happiness to me is the feeling of my heart skipping a few beats. It is the mindset of someone who cannot wait for the rest of their life, no matter what life brings them. Speaking for myself, sometimes that means throwing myself out of a plane, and other times happiness means going somewhere remote to find my solitude.
Everyone has locked something inside them waiting for it to be released. What hinders it is usually fear. Fear of other people’s opinions. Fear of potential dangers out there looming over us. We forget that dangers exist mostly in our heads; that pattern has to be broken in order to begin to live.
Don Joseph Goewey, the author of The End of Stress: Four Steps to Rewire Your Brain, unravels the whole story behind all those anxious events in our heads. His title says it all: 85 percent of what we worry about never happens.
Sounds pretty promising, doesn’t it?
Sometimes, it takes losing balance to finally find yourself. If you think about it, you’ll realize that, sometimes, little details make big stories in the end. It really shouldn’t come as a surprise that if we live an ordinary life, we will have no extraordinary stories to tell. Yet, so many people choose an ordinary, repetitive life. That should be perfectly fine if those same people wouldn’t mock or envy the ones who choose to live their lives with full lungs, fiercely.
Some of my biggest stories started off as little unimportant details. Those same seemingly unimportant details a lot of people would overlook, ended up changing my life forever. As you may already know, it’s not that I didn’t read the fine print, it’s because I read between the lines when dealing with the aftermath later.
Sometimes, it’s adventures that make our life extraordinary, and other times, it’s curveballs life throws us. If you still don’t believe life can be lived with less fear, I will remind you of something Elon Musk said:
“It is possible for ordinary people to choose to be extraordinary.”
If you think about his story, it makes a lot of sense, doesn’t it? Now it’s your time to start living the carefree life you deserve. Get rid of the shackles by choosing love instead. If you don’t know how or where to start, start by loving yourself first. If you love yourself, you won’t let fear guide you.
Practice self-love—practice letting go, and when you let something go, let it go with love.
Choose to let go of the fear that doesn’t help you grow. Let it go—for good.