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Motivation Mondays: FEAR #mondaymotivation

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“So commit! Commit yourself to pushing through the fear and becoming more than you are at the present moment. The you that could be is absolutely colossal.” – Susan Jeffers

Motivation Mondays: FEAR #mondaymotivation - We become what we fear... Have a fearless Halloween!

Motivation Mondays: FEAR #mondaymotivation – We become what we fear… Have a fearless Halloween!

Fear keeps us focused on the past or worried about the future. If we can acknowledge our fear, we can realize that right now we are okay. Right now, today, we are still alive, and our bodies are working marvelously. Our eyes can still see the beautiful sky. Our ears can still hear the voices of our loved ones. Thich Nhat Hanh
What is needed, rather than running away or controlling or suppressing or any other resistance, is understanding fear; that means, watch it, learn about it, come directly into contact with it. We are to learn about fear, not how to escape from it. Jiddu Krishnamurti

What does FEAR mean to You? Fear is a very powerful emotion. It can paralyze us, make us paranoid and suspicious/hateful of others, and prevent us from achieving our goals and dreams. When we operate from a place of fear, we are judgmental, irrational and even self-negating. Our fear of the unfamiliar/unknown stops us from connecting with people of different backgrounds. We want to stay in our tiny corner of the universe and make assumptions about a world we have refused to explore. How can we develop an open mind and a generous spirit if all we seem interested in is our ilk and ourselves? Think about it? if the only choir we sing to is the one next door, where is the growth going to come from? If we don’t make an effort to communicate with people who are not like us, how are we going to push past our limited vision and fear? Fear stunts our growth and keeps us down. The fundamental way to overcome our fear is to Face the Fear, Acknowledge it, and Push Past It; As the late Susan Jeffers, used to say, and she shared it in a book of same title – Feel The Fear And Do It Anyway! When we open our hearts and doors to naming our fears, we can learn to see them for what they are, take appropriate action and then simply go with the flow of life.

A Story: Accommodating The Water
A Taoist story tells of an old man who accidentally fell into the river rapids leading to a high and dangerous waterfall. Onlookers feared for his life. Miraculously, he came out alive and unharmed downstream at the bottom of the falls. People asked him how he managed to survive. “I accommodated myself to the water, not the water to me. Without thinking, I allowed myself to be shaped by it. Plunging into the swirl, I came out with the swirl. This is how I survived.”

A Story: Go With The Flow
Two panicky city dwellers found themselves lost in the high timber. After wandering for a day and a night, they came upon an old hermit. “How do we find our way back to civilization?” they asked the hermit. “I could tell you but you’d still get lost,” replied the hermit
“What should we do?” they asked.
“Go with the flow.”
“I beg your pardon?”
“Go with the flow. You see that stream over there. Just follow it. Streams go into creeks and creeks go into rivers and rivers go through towns. Also along the way you’ll have water to drink and berries to eat.”
“Is that what Zen people mean when they say ‘go with the flow’?”
“Yes and no,” replied the Hermit proceeding along his way. Zen Stories via Read.Goodweb

“I said to myself: “You mean all those people out there that I’ve been envying because they’re not afraid to move ahead with their lives have really been afraid? Why didn’t somebody tell me!?” I guess I never asked.” Susan Jeffers

Motivation Mondays: FEAR #mondaymotivation - We become what we fear... Have a fearless Halloween!

Motivation Mondays: FEAR #mondaymotivation – We become what we fear… Have a fearless Halloween!

Motivation Mondays: FEAR #mondaymotivation - We become what we fear... Have a fearless Halloween!

Motivation Mondays: FEAR #mondaymotivation – We become what we fear… Have a fearless Halloween!

Fear stifles our thinking and actions. It creates indecisiveness that results in stagnation. I have known talented people who procrastinate indefinitely rather than risk failure. Lost opportunities cause erosion of confidence, and the downward spiral begins. Charles Stanley
What is a fear of living? It’s being preeminently afraid of dying. It is not doing what you came here to do, out of timidity and spinelessness. The antidote is to take full responsibility for yourself – for the time you take up and the space you occupy. If you don’t know what you’re here to do, then just do some good. Maya Angelou

Why do some of us live in fear? Lack of trust in self and in others. When we don’t believe that we are good enough or that our skills and talents are worthy and valuable, we spend our lives fearful that others will criticize and humiliate us. The fact of the matter is that even the most talented people have some element of self-doubt and the difference between them and the rest of us is that they are willing to take some risk and to fail. Until we stop being afraid of failure and the opinions of others, we will continue to play small and not stand fully in our light. Some of us spend our lives trying to impress the “right people.” We keep our mouths shut and put up with all sorts of garbage in the name of X. While there is no need to be a rabble-rouser, we must learn to speak up when there is wrong doing and then move on after we’ve handled the situation. Pretending to be a peace maker and silent observer can only lead to illness if underneath our facade is rage and resentment. It is best to push aside our fear of what might transpire and speak up, and then get on with living. We can only truthfully go with the flow if we are clear about our fears and our limitations. As Maya says above, take full responsibility for yourself and do so unequivocally.

A Story: Shooting The Target
After winning several archery contests, the young and rather boastful champion challenged a Zen master who was renowned for his skill as an archer. The young man demonstrated remarkable technical proficiency when he hit a distant bull’s-eye on his first try, and then split that arrow with his second shot.
“There,” he said to the old man, “see if you can match that!” Undisturbed, the master did not draw his bow, but rather motioned for the young archer to follow him up the mountain. Curious about the old fellow’s intentions, the champion followed him high into the mountain until they reached a deep chasm spanned by a rather flimsy and shaky log. Calmly stepping out onto the middle of the unsteady and certainly perilous bridge, the old master picked a far away tree as a target, drew his bow, and fired a clean, direct hit. “Now it is your turn,” he said as he gracefully stepped back onto the safe ground. Staring with terror into the seemingly bottomless and beckoning abyss, the young man could not force himself to step out onto the log, no less shoot at a target. “You have much skill with your bow,” the master said, sensing his challenger’s predicament, “but you have little skill with the mind that lets loose the shot.
Zen Stories via Read.Goodweb

The details for Motivation Mondays are below. Join in! The themes for October and November are:

10/05 – SMILE – World Smile Day
10/12 – DISCOVER – Columbus Day
10/19 – COMMUNITY – UN Day & Make A Difference Day
10/26 – FEAR – Halloween Day

11/02 – LEGACY/REMEMBRANCE – All Souls/All Saints Day (11/1)
11/09 – HONORING VETERANS – Veteran’s Day (11/11) &
11/16 – OUR CHILDREN – Universal Children’s Day/World Children’s Day (11/20) & Great American Smokeout Day (11/19)
11/23 – GIVING THANKS – Thanksgiving Day! (11/26)
11/30 – REVISIT KINDNESS – World Kindness Day (11/13)
More Below!
“Ultimately we know deeply that the other side of every fear is freedom.” Marilyn Ferguson

Motivation Mondays: FEAR #mondaymotivation - We become what we fear... Have a fearless Halloween!

Motivation Mondays: FEAR #mondaymotivation – We become what we fear… Have a fearless Halloween!

Motivation Mondays: FEAR #mondaymotivation - We become what we fear... Have a fearless Halloween!

Motivation Mondays: FEAR #mondaymotivation – We become what we fear… Have a fearless Halloween!

Every time you encounter something that forces you to “handle it,” your self-esteem is raised considerably. You learn to trust that you will survive, no matter what happens. And in this way your fears are diminished immeasurably. Susan Jeffers
We who lived in concentration camps can remember the men who walked through the huts comforting others, giving away their last piece of bread. They may have been few in number, but they offer sufficient proof that everything can be taken away from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s way. The way in which a man accepts his fate and all the suffering it entails, the way in which he takes up his cross, gives him ample opportunity—even in the most difficult circumstances—to add a deeper meaning to his life. Viktor E. Frankl

How do we overcome our basic fear? With Halloween around the corner, this is a good time to look at our fears and address them. First, we must acknowledge that FEAR exists and then we must contemplate what scares us and what we are afraid of losing. Next, we must remember to be present and take small steps that will help us see the fear for what it is and look for solutions that are doable. Above all, our attitude is imperative; Victor Frankl calls it the last Freedom. We get to choose how we view the world, our struggles, and our role in it. We can build a mountain out of our fears or look at them objectively and find an alternative pathway out. Our attitude is an important key to facing the fear factor.

Why are we afraid of letting go of our fears? Sometimes, we fear things that we imagine will happen if we do X and then we stay stuck and don’t move forward. We must move our feet to overcome our fears and then make a choice about what we want to do and where we want to be. When we cling to our fears, there is no growth there. We must learn to let go and ride the waves of life. Along the way, we might get some bruises, disappointments and even betrayals but, the letdowns are great teachers that will strengthen us and humble us. As we ride the waves, we will learn to master our challenges, face them squarely and watch our fears diminish. But we must ACT – we must do the work and take full responsibility for it; good and bad. Taking decisive action is an important solution to fear. Try it!

A Story: The Present Moment
A Japanese warrior was captured by his enemies and thrown into prison. That night he was unable to sleep because he feared that the next day he would be interrogated, tortured, and executed. Then the words of his Zen master came to him, “Tomorrow is not real. It is an illusion. The only reality is now.”
Heeding these words, the warrior became peaceful and fell asleep.

A Story: Ride The Waves
Once there lived a village of creatures along the bottom of a great crystal river. The current of the river swept silently over them all — young and old, rich and poor, compassionate and cruel — the current going its own way, knowing only its own crystal self. Each creature in its own manner clung tightly to the twigs and rocks of the river bottom, for clinging was their way of life, and resisting the current what each had learned from birth. But one creature said at last, “I am tired of clinging.
Though I cannot see it with my eyes, I trust that the current knows where it is going. I shall let go, and let it take me where it will. Clinging, I shall die of boredom.”
The other creatures laughed and said, “Fool! Let go, and that current will throw you tumbled and smashed across the rocks, and you will die quicker than boredom!” But the one heeded them not, and taking a breath did let go, and at once was tumbled and smashed by the current across the rocks. Yet in time, as the creature refused to cling again, the current lifted him free from the bottom, and he was bruised and hurt no more. And the creatures downstream, to whom he was a stranger, cried, “See a miracle! A creature like ourselves, yet he flies! See the Messiah, come to save us all!” And the one carried in the current said, “I am no more Messiah than you. The river delights to lift us free, if only we dare let go. Our true work is this voyage, this adventure.”
But they cried the more, “Savior!” all the while clinging to the rocks, and when they looked again he was gone, and they were left alone, and began making legends of a Savior.Zen Stories via Read.Goodweb

Positive Motivation Tip: What we fear, we become. Stand up and face the fear and trust that the outcome will be beneficial.
Motivation Mondays is open to anyone who wishes to share a motivational quote, photo, personal challenge or a post that encourages others to start the week on an upbeat note.
Basic Instructions: Each week, I will have a motivation word to help us create a response. (See listed words for the months above/below)
Email address: You may email or share your post as a comment and I will add it to the round-up of related posts. email it to: contact(@)mirthandmotivation(.)com
Category tag: – Share your post using Motivation Mondays
Twitter hashtag: – Use this on Twitter #MotvnM
Dedicated Page: There is a dedicated page for Motivation Mondays. It has the same instructions and will include other helpful tools and a link to the round-up
Facebook Page: MotivationOnMondays Join our page and add your post and/or any motivational piece you think will be helpful to others.
Facebook Community: We have a Facebook community forum to compliment the page. It serves as another way to share uplifting posts and thoughts. Please join in and add your voice.

Badge: – I created a fun badge using PicMonkey’s free photo editing tools. You can create your own, use WordPress’ integrated tool on your blog or you are welcome to use mine. (see dedicated page)
Tag: – Motivation Mondays
Hashtag: – #MotvnM

Related Posts

PHOTO CREDITS/ATTRIBUTIONS:  Zen Stories via Read.Goodweb  All Photos: Public Domain Free from Category: Fear In Art, Little Miss Muffet, via Wikipedia and/or from my Personal Collection.

Until Next Time…
Ask. Believe. Receive. ©
Elizabeth Obih-Frank
Mirth and Motivation
Positive Kismet

37 Comments leave one →


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