The last few weeks have been quite busy in my little world of social media. When I began blogging here at SoberJulie I didn’t ever imagine that my online journal of memories would bring me to the place where I’m virtually sharing and learning as I do life. Now that I’m here I’m often humbled by the opportunity I have here to learn and grow by penning my thoughts and experiences.
As you all know I strive to say it like it is and to correct myself as often as I need to, I realize I’m someone who can easily veer off path when my attention is caught by something shiny. Thankfully I have an amazing support system who keeps me in check; believe me when I say my husband is apt to call me out if he feels I’m being inauthentic online…cough.
So where am I going with this post?
Forward I hope, onto the topic of Fear.
Fear is something which can stand in our way without us even realizing. When I began this blog I did so anonymously. I didn’t link it to my personal life at all until I was outed on Facebook. It was then that I stepped over the massive roadblock that fear had created and merged my online self with my real life self.
With my coming out (yes, I’m probably using this term incorrectly but dammit I want to) I was scared as hell! In my real life I’d told a handful of folks about my alcoholism and recovery, now the whole world would know. Not only that, my friends in recovery would have the opportunity to view and possibly judge my outlook on my sober journey.
My mind raced with the possible judgments, the sneers I saw people giving; over and over I analyzed the possible horrible opinions people would have of me!
Fear Almost Crippled Me
Fear had stolen my joyful appreciation for life and with its icy grip came an assumption that I had a clue of what would actually happen. This roadblock I’d allowed to be placed upon my path effected other areas of my life as I spent energy worrying instead of seeking out the positive.
Fear tends to have a ripple effect, if we entertain feelings of fear our minds perspective can become tainted. Suddenly I was seeing shadows where there weren’t any.
It wasn’t until my husband sat me down and cold slapped me verbally by asking “What’s the worst that can happen” that I actually stopped my inner insane dialogue long enough to look at the situation un-emotionally.
The worst that could happen is that people would judge me unfairly, based upon a pre-conceived notion. If that happened then perhaps they weren’t meant to be on my journey with me. Or as my husband put it, I’d be better off without them and either way it wouldn’t change who I actually was.
You see, when I get caught up in the circle of fear things appear larger than they really are. When I face that fear and take away its power the reality of the situation becomes clear.
In the end there are folks who will form an opinion of me which I would disagree with, but I can’t control that. I can simply roll along being as authentic as possible, checking myself along the way while striving to bring my best to the online and real life communities.
God gave me a chance to change and I feel its my duty to share this with the world, to show that anything is possible.
Fear Isn’t Fact Even When It Feels Like It Is
Fear isn’t a fact and I wonder if you’d agree with me when I say we sometimes get confused and treat it like it is.
As someone dealing with PTSD and other anxieties fear can be an inhibitor in my life which I’m determined to overcome. Fears, even those we are trying to overlook, can suck the energy right out of you. When caught in a state of fear one can become stuck in an anxious state, never actually experiencing all that life has to offer.
By learning to acknowledge and face fears we CAN steal back the power we’ve been losing. Having a belief in God pulls me towards this point, I have the gift of believing that He can handle all things. That I can turn to him for the strength to face fears when I’m weak and feel caught in a dark place. It’s a process which I undergo often and it’s one that I cherish and value.
Is fear interfering with your life?
In the near future I’m going to be sharing some techniques for identifying and dealing with fears. These have helped me immensely and I know they can help others as well.
Do you have fears which are stopping you in your life?