Overcoming Fear letting go is the biggest thing that has ever stopped me or held me back in life is my own fear of uncertainty. There, I said it.
In quiet moments, I can drift back to the exact moment when I was faced with the decision to either step up to my fear, or retreat from it. I can picture that time in my teens when I went safe instead of flying high. in my twenties when staying safe and certain meant a lonely death to my goals. That time in my thirties when the decision was more subtle, over weeks, and the opportunity slipped quietly away whilst I was busy on other things.
Each time, I retreated in fear and let the moment slip away unnoticed so that instead of stepping up to the challenge and diving into the opportunity – I quietly kept busy on some distraction until the noise had died down.
It was literally a quiet, sighing death, with no line to be crossed or bell-ringing moment of loss – not until later, much later when the opportunity had truly passed and I was mopping things up in the background did the gravity of knowing I had failed myself due to fear finally hit home.
And, tragically, I would drink and drink and drink on the failure, rumbling bitterly about how the circumstances had conspired to strip me of the moment, or how I just lacked that final spark of confidence that might somehow have helped me across the line.
Today, after nearly four years of sobriety, I have the courage and clarity to confront this ugly truth about myself. It’s humbling and painful to accept that I have only failed through my own design. Overcoming Fear Letting Go.
But also, out of the ashes, comes a brilliant shining acceptance that I am flawed and human and, let’s face it, at my core, just good enough like any other human being. My past, with it’s hazy memories and stumbling apologies and raw missed opportunities is part of who I am. It’s something I come to peace with each day, over and again, like I am destined to forever learn the path of self acceptance through my own actions.
At first, I thought it was some cruel joke – me having to accept and forgive myself each day for the glorious waste I made at those critical times. But as I worked deeper with my own self acceptance and truly began to grant myself the wonder of self forgiveness, the shame began to melt away.
I was no longer awkward and brittle about my story. My ego softened to the point where I could embrace my own utter stupidity and at the same time shrug and exhale and put it into perspective. I hadn’t died. I wasn’t locked up for life. My condition wasn’t terminal.
Now, I accept that it is my life’s work to be humble and compassionate to myself first – and then extend this to others. Working on my own healing and self acceptance triggers a daily exercise in gently deflating my ego. It’s like my own version of spiritual push ups – and I can’t pay anyone else to do them for me.
It’s never easy – my eyes can follow someone else for a moment and instantly I am in that place where I could’ve been a contender – or standing on a street corner preaching about the end of the world. And the life challenge for me is overcoming fear letting go just as quickly and to forgive – and accept myself for who I am right here and now.
My own personal growth comes from this – knowing that merely existing isn’t something to apologize for. My existence does not need to be justified or proven or rated or externally judged for my own self acceptance.
Truly overcoming fear letting go for me means softening the stories I tell myself about my past. I’m not that bad. I didn’t screw up so much. The spiral of self pity and is my own responsibility – and now that I am aware of it, I can step outside of it each day.