Flashlight the Fear 

Were you scared of monsters under your bed when you were little? I wasn’t scared so much of that– but what lurked in the closet.

The idea that someone could possibly be in there waiting for me.

Our brains are already developing that keen sense of surveying possible threats of danger — even when we are 5 years old.

What I want to know is what lurks in your fear closet today?  

I know you’ve probably already heard that the part of the brain that’s wired to protect us doesn’t know the difference between a true physical threat and a psychological one.  So we can’t really rely on that information to help us do the slightly scary things that may bring us more joy, more love, more feel good in our lives because that beautiful part of us thinks it could kill us. 

We have to find another way — to befriend the fear rather than sit in the dark trembling about what could happen, feeling helpless tucked in our beds. 

I say let’s go right to the closet and shine a big old clunky flashlight in there.

Start naming the fear.  

In my closet is the pressure of performing. The fear that no one will get me if I do it my way. The fear that I may fail in all my dreams and visions.  The fear that I have no idea what I’m doing — and my magic may be all made up in my head. 

Quite honestly, listing them out loud here to you makes me breathe deeper. And I’m still breathing here writing this (no sudden death from getting honest with myself).

Try it and see if that works for you.  Shine your flashlight on all those thoughts hiding out back there somewhere. Identify them as thoughts that are present– not as life sentences that you can’t change.

We don’t have to choose to be helpless.  It’s so much easier to face those thoughts in the light than it is to carry them around with us pretending we aren’t scared.

Own the fear– name it,  breathe into it. Let it get big. Let is lessen. Step outside of it– like you are movie character in your own life. Step up on the mountain of 10 years’ from now, and see the closet, the fears from a different vantage point. How can you have more fun befriending it?  You’ve got this. 

With love for all the things hiding in our brain’s closet —