Conquer Your Fears
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.…It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.…”—Marianne Williamson
Our Deepest Fear
To Awaken Your Authentic Self, you cannot be tied to your fears. An awakened mind is a mind liberated from fear. Marianne Williamson’s header quote is a significant work from the world acclaimed spiritual activist, often misattributed to Nelson Mandela’s inauguration speech. She suggests it is not our darkness which we are afraid of; rather, it is our magnificence.
We are unwilling to reveal our brilliance in the event others are made to feel inferior. This is significant given the dynamics of peer pressure and culture nowadays. We feel safe playing small and blend in with the masses since it shifts the spotlight off us. The questions and self-doubts may arise: “What if I am not good enough?” “What if I’m found out?” “There are others who are better than I am.” This is evident in popular culture which epitomizes the tall poppy syndrome. Many people fear that revealing their uniqueness may be inappropriate to their friends, family, and colleagues. Playing small serves no one, especially yourself. You are unique in many ways and your gifts and talents are a unique expression of universal energy. To deny others your gifts and talents may be likened to a tree refusing to bear fruit in season since it doubts its source of intelligence.
You are unique in many ways and your gifts and talents are a unique expression of universal energy. Click To TweetI draw your attention to the famous inventor Thomas Edison. Had he withheld his invention of the electric light bulb, we would be living in darkness these days. Another steward of notable inventions was Benjamin Franklin, who was an accomplished printer and inventor. His famous Franklin stove may well have been patented had he chosen to do so. Instead, he donated his time and money to developing the invention by giving it away, believing it would benefit many people. We doubt our magnificence since it directly coincides with self-esteem.
Self-doubt is toxic and debilitating, as it serves to convince you of your unworthiness. It is the silent voice within that we fear and judge our self-worth by. We are terrified of our personal power given the self-doubt which rears its ugly head from an early age. It is estimated that by the time you are seventeen years old you will have heard the phrase “NO, you can’t” an average of 150,000 times. In contrast, you will have heard, “Yes, you can” approximately 5,000 times. It is no wonder we have been inured with disempowering beliefs and the inability to succeed.
You are entitled to goodness, abundance, and life’s wondrous pleasures. They are there waiting for you to claim them. Instead, we internalize a script that informs us otherwise. We follow this script and doubt our true potential, our future vision and goals. Paulo Coelho reminds us about honouring our personal legend in his acclaimed novel The Alchemist. You are not depriving others of greatness by playing small. Marianne Williamson’s poem goes on to say, “Your playing small doesn’t serve the world…as we let our own light shine we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.” As you claim and step into your glory, you allow others to see the possibility of attaining the same freedom. For this reason we applaud and salute the underdog. We identify with them since it is embedded into modern culture to thrive and succeed. There is an underdog within us all waiting to appear. We unconsciously hold ourselves down convinced of our unworthiness to remain in the darkness. To sit on the sidelines is safe since we cannot be judged, labeled, or criticized there. But safe never serves anyone, let alone yourself. Leadership expert and speaker Robin Sharma suggests, “If people aren’t laughing at your dreams, they’re not big enough.”
To sit on the sidelines is safe since we cannot be judged, labeled, or criticized there. But safe never serves anyone, let alone yourself. Click To TweetI wish to remind you of the baby elephant principle which sums up the truth of our fears. Baby elephants in captivity are chained at the leg to a small wooden peg in the ground. As they mature to full size, they are capable of breaking free given their relative size. Yet as adults they remain tethered to the chain, conditioned to believe it has the power to hold them captive. In some ways our lives mimic the behavior of adult elephants. Many of us form limiting beliefs during childhood which keep us imprisoned as adults. To overcome your deepest fear, acknowledge your Authentic Self which is the recurring theme throughout the book. Allow it passage throughout your life. Connect with life at the soul level instead of intellectualizing it. Your soul is boundless and not defined by limitations. As you identify with your soul nature, it becomes effortless to reveal your talents and genius to the world. Fear is an illusion which deprives you of your power. It stifles your growth and convinces you of your unworthiness—it limits your potential. Your soul nature is infinite by contrast, unbound by time or space. Learn to think in terms of limitless possibilities—acknowledge your inner richness. Once you make an inner declaration toward greatness, the universe acknowledges it by bringing forth opportunities which allow your magnificence to shine. You must take the lead. You must take the first step toward claiming your own power.