“Fear is a manipulative emotion that can trick us into living a boring life.” ~ Donald Miller
When faced with a choice or a decision, our first instinct is usually the correct one. It is only when we allow ourselves to reflect, think, or examine that choice do we change our mind. Often we have that moment later when we go, “I wish I had followed my first instincts.”
Fear is what gets in our head and actually defines our choices — unfortunately it usually is not for the better.
Recently, I engaged in a very interesting conversation with an individual about a career choice they were struggling to make. They had gone through a series of personal and professional challenges and was finally establishing firm footing and confidence. Even though they definitely were not where they desired to be, they had moved into a much better place than before, they were terrified of taking advantage of a huge opportunity presented to them.
As we talked through the endless array of pros and cons, I struggled to help them discover an answer to the choice that lay before them. Then, I asked them to reflect on all the choices that they had made in their life where they trusted their instincts and followed through on them; and, on the times they ignored their gut and made a different choice. Upon careful introspection they realized that most of their adverse outcomes occurred when they overrode their gut instincts and made a different choice or took a different path.
They knew that they had a great opportunity to take a giant step forward. It was fear that was preventing them from taking the big step forward. In this case, it was only able to hold them back until they realized that it was fear that previously influenced their other bad choices, decisions, and outcomes.
We all have the ability to embrace, live and celebrate a very exciting, unique life. The first step is letting go of the fear that rules us, makes our life “safe”, and everything around us a little boring and underwhelming. Let go of the fear and embrace the opportunities that exist in front of you right now — what is holding YOU back?