Fear is not a weakness, it’s an opportunity to grow.

Fear is a sensation we have all known, albeit for different reasons. We are all too familiar with that stomach drop that you get when you’re in line for a carnival ride you promised your friends you’d ride, or the sweat on your palms before a confession of love, and even the way your arm hair stands up in the dead of the night when you hear a strange noise when you’re home alone.

It has saved our lives since the beginning of our existence, alerting our ancestors from predators and other dangers. It’s one of the million things that makes us human, and I can assure you even the bravest person in the world has felt it at least once in our lives. So, if we’re all currently here because of our ability to fear, why are we so quick to mock it when we sense it in others?

We see fear as a weakness, because it shows vulnerability. It shows we’re not indestructible and that we feel insecure in the environment we currently occupy. It disrupts normalcy, and makes us feel out of place because we see something wrong in a situation that everyone else is simply accepting.

And that’s fine. It’s fine to feel scared from time to time, especially when you’re putting yourself out there. But what about those times that fear held you back?

Fear is so stigmatized, that admitting you have it and need help dealing with it becomes such a difficult task that we just give up before we even start. And what’s even more horrific than giving up, is limiting ourselves and our ideas because we convince ourselves they’ll never be a reality.

The pessimism that comes attached to the new definition of fear is what’s most bothersome. We all have wings, but it’s up to us to convince ourselves that we can use them to fly.

Today, I ask you: when was the last time you did something that scared you? Do you remember how you felt after it was done?

The problem with fear is that it creates uncertainty. We’re scared of the different outcomes, and our predisposed pessimism makes us think of the most outrageous scenarios that probably won’t happen. You see, possibilities can be a very wonderful and terrifying thing, and we have to stop seeing them as threats but more as opportunities. Because even the worst situation that could happen to you at this very moment, will come to an end. It’s just the cycle of life.

At their darkest hours, humanity is known to thrive. If we came back from the black plague, why wouldn’t you come back from being unemployed or homeless or depressed or whatever else might be happening to you at this very moment?

We all have to learn to see bad situations as lessons. We must learn from the darkness, in order to find the light. Embrace your negative emotions to heal, embrace your fear to recognize what scares you the most and go against your senses. Be fearless, daring and unapologetic. After everything is over, you’ll find that the feeling of conquering your fears it’s ecstatic.

So what if the girl you’ve been in love with for years rejected you? So what if you threw up as soon as the carnival ride ended? So what if all those chain mails you never forwarded when you were twelve were right and that noise means your house is haunted now? You didn’t leave empty handed from those terrible situations, because now you have experience and a story to tell. You are now a changed person, and it’s up to you if that change is a good or bad thing.

Wouldn’t it have felt worse to live a life wondering “what if”?

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