Life often feels like a series of unrelated fragments coming at you at a hundred miles an hour. A friend is diagnosed with cancer, the fridge stops working, you get a bill that you do not know how you are going to pay, a different friend is getting a divorce, one of your kids is struggling and it is breaking your heart – it often feels like confusion, doubts, anger, fear, betrayal, stress – life can often feel like a random series of highs and mostly lows.
There is another way to see it – that awareness that at all times you can change the story. You can choose joy, you can choose to be honest, you can choose to be compassionate.
When I speak to people I hear about all of the amazing creative things that they want to do and then I hear about all of the reasons of why they cannot do all the things they dream about because they are scared and the fear has become an obstacle. Most of what I speak about with individuals is fear.
Fear has all of these secret costumes that shows up in so many different disguises such as perfection, dignity – things that are pretending not to be fear but it is.
Fear and creativity go hand in hand and if you want to live a creative life then you will have to make room for fear. Fear can be dispelled, even when it runs extremely deep, but fear must be respected until you find a way to release it.
We have power, more power than we realize, power to decide that we are going to make something good out of anything.
To thrive we must first commit ourselves to a higher power. Which will always mean that we surrender our worry and anxiety and drama and stress. But we also must entrust others because if we don’t we will inevitably deal with our anxiety and worry and fear by trying to control and manipulate others through negative things like judging them and condemning them and disapproving of whatever they do. We pick them apart. We critique them. We try to shame them into doing things our way. Have you ever seen a parent deal with their anxiety about their kids by endlessly nagging them about everything under the sun? When you interior life is a mess, when you are racked with worry and guilt and anxiety – you are desperate for a distraction, something to take your thoughts off of the pain and chaos within you which often expresses itself in judging and shaming and condemning others.
One of the gifts that has helped me face fear over the years has been the public library. I read a lot and when I read I can sense the movement happening all throughout the pages of the book. It is beneath, within and above everything, like an electricity that the whole thing is plugged into. You see people waking up, leaving things behind, stepping into new realities and something within you resonates, because that is what is happening within you. You read these books and are reminded of your shared human connection with everybody everywhere. History moves forward, and people are transformed. That is why books have such enduring power. These stories insist in a thousand different ways that we don’t have to settle, that tomorrow doesn’t have to be a repeat of today, that we don’t have to be enslaved to fear or despair – that we can change, move, heal and we can leave behind whatever needs to be left behind so that we can step into a better future.
Take a song, for example – written by someone you do not know, preformed by someone you may never meet yet in the moment that you hear the lyrics you feel that the song is being directed for you specifically. Certain pieces of music move us in unique and powerful ways, and the word we often use is inspiring. But what do we mean by this? We mean that the song is chords and notes and sounds and harmony and volume and all those physical, tangible elements and yet there is something else to the song, something beyond its material essence, that speaks to us.
The song breathed into you something good, hopeful, true, comforting, healing or genuine. It is easy to become numb, bitter, cynical, jaded, rolling your eyes a lot, checking out, mailing it in, taking each breath you have been given for granted. But when you remember about being awake, about practicing gratitude, about having your eyes open we can actually do our part to heal, repair, and restore this world we call home.
Any time that you have fear – understand that fear should always tell you something.
Fear is boring. Fear only has one line of dialogue – What does fear always say? “No. No. No. No.” If fear was a character in a movie or television show it would come into ever scene and just say, “No. No. No. No.”
If you feel yourself always paralyzed by fear remember that fear is boring, it has no imagination and it will get you nowhere. The voices in your head are not very creative or intelligent. One of the only things they know how to say is “You don’t deserve this” over and over. When you counter by changing the discussion everything becomes a gift and you will begin to receive.
So even though you might not be able to see the future clearly, I encourage you every day to take the plunge into fear in the hopes that in the depths of fear, you will come out feeling more alive than ever before. Don’t be afraid to lose yourself in a book, or a song or in nature. The individual that comes out might just surprise you.
Kevin T. Cahill is an award winning sales professional and consultant specializing in the art of managing change and achieving great results. As the founder of The Change Revolution, this international best selling author and speaker inspires men and women alike. As someone who has mastered the art of resilience and hope, Kevin’s philosophy as a clarity builder is strategic and results driven. Kevin’s passion is to equip individuals and organizations with a renewed sense of clarity and excitement, knowing that positive change will bring about positive gains. His exciting creation The Change Revolution offers a winning blueprint for navigating through change and achieving success.
Speaking inquiries email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 519-836-7989.