What stops you from being you? What holds you back with experimenting with life and embracing its power? Fear. Fear presents itself in many ways, sometimes it is perceived (in fact often when in reference to the psychological realm), sometimes fear is actual and is becomes reactive to what is known as a ‘real’ threat, usually in response to something physical occurring in our sphere of realty.
All fear is clearly perceived, for if it weren’t it would not pass through our sensory and cognitive faculties. The fear I would like to focus on is the fear that is projected and perceived to be real but is actually not momentous. What I mean by this is that as cultural beings and with the ability to conceptualise and engage in our faculties of memory we have an ability to project scenarios and thoughts in to the future. We have the ability to also project ‘back’ in to our pasts. Whilst there are moments that this is quite useful and productive and can be applied to protect us from immediate danger. For instance the memory of a particular scenario may invoke similar emotions in the present n order to safeguard us from that danger reoccurring, which would ultimately cause us harm.
When does the perception of fear that only exist in our mental faculties become a hindrance to our growth, development and greater understanding of life? The answer to this is multifaceted and is ultimately rooted in the inability to break perpetual cycles of existence that revolve around being addicted to a fearful state of being. When this is occurring it represents a repetitive cycle of what one is accustomed to. Is fear related to stress and vice versa? If so, what form does this stress take? Previously mentioned was the culturally created fear, what does this represent for most of us? In a world which values particular psychological postures it is essential that one understands oneself in relation to the world and its happenings. Without this deeper insight in to self, attaining a particular level or understanding of self esteem, fear has the capacity to dwell deep and hinder ones actions and ultimately progress.
The fear that is being focused upon here is the fear which (in a compounded manner) is being created by the way in which our society functions and behaves. We have become a society that is dependent upon abstract and culturally created notions of survival. In order to actually survive, we have moved away from needs and now in this day and age, it is our wants, desires and add ons which represent our ‘must haves’ and necessities. Without these perceived necessities we are struggling to physically survive. The psychological importance and attachment placed on materialistic attainment and the need to socially progress has consumed our lives to the extent where our own realities have become distorted. But what does this have to do with the fear we are referring to?
We fear not having these unnecessary materialistic possessions or status within society. We fear what others may think of us. We fear being considered less of a person or less of a human being by others and our peers if we do not reach a particular level of social status which is often associated with a particular amount of materialistic wealth. We ‘worry’ about the future and whether we will be able to keep up with the changing times. There is so much cognitive energy placed on information that if we were to strip it all back has no real, tangible importance in todays’ world or any other perceived world for that matter.
What we are referring to here is the unnecessary involvement in materialistic competition which in turn negatively affects our psychological state of being. Can we detach from society, become an outcast, live differently to others? Even if we had the internalised psycho-emotional coping mechanisms to do so, it is difficult to remove yourself from the system, for our cultural habits have become entwined with actual physical and psychological needs for survival. To detach from the system is essentially removing oneself from all of society and doing so required deep transitions and lots of support. We are part of a greater system which dictates human behaviour and is systemically engrained n our social workings, this is reality.
Where to from here? It appears fear, anxiety and worry have now increased… NO, not necessarily. There are various paths one can take. The first is recognising this exists and is real and that awareness is the first step to internal and external change. There are small steps we can take to eliminate projected fears and it begins with altering our frame of mind and the way in which we approach life. How one chooses to live their life is their business, of course. But if you feel anxious, if you feel you worry and fear excessively then evaluate your personal sociocultural circumstances, change your behaviours, expectations, values and morph these to align with what you consider to be your deeper purpose. yes suffering is often part of change, but this is only temporary and the reward at the end of this greater self awareness, greater self confidence in your life’s direction and less fear, which ultimately will limit your ability to grow and become.
This post may appear a little abstract and not quite definitive, it has been written so purposefully. Delve deeper in to the beginnings of these notions. Begin to question your existence, your surroundings, your values, your behaviours and actions. Ask yourself; does fear dwell deep within me? Does fear dictate to me my actions, do I excessively fear what I cannot control…? This is a starting point and know that we are deeply connected each other, to all of our environment, both natural and social… SS.