If we wanted to, we could live our lives focused on our fears: What if no one likes me? What if I fail? What if they laugh at me? What if he leaves me? What if I'm not good enough?
Life is full of fear. The good news is, we can live a life free of our fears. We can overcome those fears and live a life of victory, of encouragement and of fulfillment. But first, we have to learn to release the grip of fear in our lives.
During his first inaugural speech, Franklin Delano Roosevelt said, "...the only thing we have to fear is fear itself-nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance." Our fears paralyze us, and prevent us from moving forward. As FDR said, they are nameless, unreasoning, and unjustified. Once we learn how to release our fear, and embrace our lives, then we will be on the path to victory.
It can be hard to know how to let go of fear. The bible has some great things to say about overcoming fear, about casting your cares upon God. He promises to sustain us, regardless of what we fear, and regardless of what we face.
The first step in overcoming your fears is to become aware of them. Don't beat yourself up, just be specific with yourself about what you really fear. Once you identify your fears, look at them in the here and now. In this moment, realize that you are safe, and that there is nothing to fear, right now. For just this moment, you can let go of that fear.
There are some things in life we can change. Other things, we have no control over. As you begin to identify your own fears, ask yourself if this is something you can affect. Are you afraid of a loved one dying? There isn't much to do about that, so release that fear into the universe. Fearing cancer is useless. You can be aware of your risks of cancer, and mitigate your own health issues, but there isn't much change you can effect against that ugly disease. You could fear having a heart attack, but then you could change your diet, get some exercise, and take control of your own life. When you take control of the things you can change, then you can manage your fears.
The acronym for fear is: False Expectations Appearing Real. Most of the things we fear never come to pass. We waste a lot of time, energy and money worrying about and fearing things that never come to pass.
Focus today on the things you can do to improve your life, and let the rest of it go. It sounds easy, and really, it is. Be realistic. Focus on now. Change what you can, and move forward, free from fear.