Fear isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it’s just not something that needs to run your life. I’m not talking about letting go of fear so that you’re never afraid of trying something new or going beyond your “comfort zone.” This affirmation is for disengaging autopilot and stepping forward into a more intentional life experience with love, trust, and authenticity.
“In many ways life is a series of tests of my creative problem solving, my inner strength, and my ability to stay focused on where love and happiness are found. All of life’s many tests are here to help me to dig down deeper so I can find out who I truly am—as well as rise up higher—so I can find out who I’m capable of becoming. Especially life’s surprise tests. Actually… most of my tests have been pop quizzes.” – Karen Salmansohn
Seeing life as a series of pop quizzes may be one approach that eases the anxiety of everyday living; there are deadlines and grades to consider, but there will always be another opportunity. Whether or not you think of life as a big, evolving lesson and yourself as a student, fear is a recurring theme.
Perhaps we’re driven by financial concerns, worries about what might happen, or the fear that what others acquire just isn’t in the stars for us. We think we’re comparing to improve, but we’re really just making ourselves feel bad.
We’re afraid of failure and not being good enough, smart enough, interesting enough, productive enough, liked enough, or loved enough. If our beliefs are so solid, then why do we get defensive when a contradicting belief “attacks” ours? Do we really want to live in that state of unrest?If we were stable—enough—inside, maybe the outside would be easier. Click To Tweet
The key to internal freedom is to acknowledge what’s driving us every day, to just notice it and know it. The trick is, how do we face our fears without more fear? How do we take a mindful approach to looking within without adding judgment or shame to what we find?
I hope this affirmation helps you access that freedom you seek.
“Letting Go of Fear Is My Assignment Here.”
I’m learning to let go of who I thought I was so that I can step into who I really am.
If we look to life as our greatest teacher—we may not always be an A+ student or enjoy the particular lesson, but we have great respect for what we’re learning—we’ll begin to see a pattern. We see patterns of fear and patterns of love, and letting go of fear becomes one of the surest ways to loving our lives again, or for the very first time.
A Course in Miracles says that “No one who lives in fear is really alive.” The Course also says that “fear is a call for love, an unconscious recognition of what has been denied.”Fear, in every form, is a call to remember the love that's missing. Click To Tweet
We let go first by accepting that there’s something that’s not serving us. If we want to go beyond the fear, we need to acknowledge both its presence and why it’s here. Identifying the fear brings forth the assignment.
Assignments can be:
- “To stop attracting abusive partners because I don’t think I’m lovable enough.”
- “To stop looking for evidence that I’m inferior.”
- “To stop feeling like I need to always do and achieve something to prove my worth. I’m not good enough unless I’m busy enough.”
- “To start accepting and honoring my shortcomings instead of feeling defeated by limitation.”
- “To start being more open with my forgiveness instead of being afraid that I’ll be hurt again.”
The fears we see above are: “I’m not _____ enough” and “I don’t want to be hurt.” I’m not an expert, but a lot of the discomfort that I’ve experienced in my life stems from one of these two underlying fears.
The fear might feel like anxiety, sound like rage, or look like indifference, but if we stay with it long enough and dig a little deeper, we’ll find a simple belief living at the core.If we follow any painful story back far enough, we'll find some source of fear. Click To Tweet
A fear-based story often starts off with one painful experience and is followed by a downward spiral of negative chatter, emotions, and more painful experiences that match that frequency. The story becomes the way we approach and thus live our life, constantly affecting everything we think, feel, and do.
The story loop can be triggered by experiences of:
- Being unheard or unseen
Ultimately, what “triggers” the downward spiral of negativing thinking is just another guide. Our triggers offer us valuable information, if we’re willing to just show up and pay attention.
Our assignments can help us shift our allegiance from fear to curiosity, or from attachment to trust.
Once you’ve accepted the assignment, you can accept that you cannot avoid the assignment. Some things you must go through to get out of. If you don’t show up for it, it will keep showing up for you.
“I Bring My Shadows to the Light.”
I can rise above the darkness by bringing it into the light, by making the unconscious conscious.
A Course in Miracles says, “Light cannot enter darkness when a mind believes in darkness and will not let it go. Truth does not struggle against ignorance, and love does not attack fear. What needs no protection does not defend itself. Defense is of your making.”
Love doesn’t conquer anything; it doesn’t need to conquer anything, just as light doesn’t wage war. It’s the darkness that fights to keep itself locked up, out of sight, feigning control over life.
As long as we want to defend our shadows, our reasons for being hurt and our victimhood, we will have our shadows. We will live and make choices in the name of the darkness in us, always seeing cause for offense and the need to defend our brittle beliefs.Fear cannot direct the lives of those who keep looking at their fear with love. Click To Tweet
Pema Chödrön, a beloved American Buddhist, offers us this insight: “Each time you stay present with fear and uncertainty, you’re letting go of a habitual way of finding security and comfort.”
Our presence is our power to let go of what needs to go. Fear-based stories are stories that can be changed, because they stem from a core belief, and beliefs are just thought patterns that have been practiced long enough to stick, and a thought can be changed.
“Letting Go of Fear Is Possible through Love.”
Whatever form fear takes, I know the content of love overcomes it.
Getting knocked down doesn’t mean you’re weak or stupid or incapable—it means you’re human. You might wipe out physically, in your work, or in a relationship, but messing up doesn’t require giving up on what matters to us.
We must confront what’s promising to keep us down, keeping our spirits low and our dreams on hold. What is that base belief saying? How is it running the show? As soon as we see it for what it is, letting go of fear is natural because we see that it’s not true (or, it doesn’t have to be true for us).Real love is the only way to find security in an insecure world. Click To Tweet
Force, making things happen, fixing the problem, and pretending that you have no weaknesses isn’t the solution. The solution is always love, in some way. It doesn’t matter HOW we love: We share our triggers with a friend; we repeat a positive affirmation; we do the thing we’re scared of. We have choices.
Whatever we do with love, because of love, in the name of love—it feels like love—is what’s powerful enough to correct all things.
Appreciation, connection, moving your body, forgiveness, meditation, talking with a therapist, and telling yourself that you love yourself all feel like love. It’s the energy of what you do that informs you whether your decision was made with love or from fear.Letting go of fear feels like love. Click To Tweet
You can honor your path and your past, knowing you did the best you could at any given moment. If you don’t believe that, what’s the fear-based belief underneath that?
I’m still practicing this new thought pattern myself:
My truth is that I’m always doing the best I can.
I may have missed the lesson yesterday, but I can try again today.
I am not stuck in any belief that makes me feel anything other than loved and loving.
My comebacks are more important than my setbacks.
I am willing to confront the fears that live underneath my pain, and I don’t need to judge what I see.
I will keep choosing love as many times as I need to, because I want to enjoy myself.
If you haven’t been showing up for your assignment, it’s okay. It will show up again, and you’ll show up when you’re ready.
Be easy with yourself.
- What fears are you in the process of letting go, bringing to the light, transforming?
- What’s one painful experience/story that you’d like to stop repeating?
- What is one decision that you can make today that would feel more like love?
Please share your thoughts, favorite parts of this affirmation, healing insights you’ve gained from falling down and getting back up, and any helpful stories of a shift with me in the comments.
Send a little light to someone you love; share this affirmation and share the love.
Trust your detours. Bring curiosity to the fear. Even detours into anxiety, depression, bitterness, rage, and distrust become guidance to the curious soul.