Monday, 20 October 2008

Your Own Worst Enemy!

I call it my near death experience. I will never forget that day. I was coming out of the cinema, with my normal teenage excitement, still thinking about the movie I had just seen, while worrying about getting home before my curfew. I didn’t pay attention to the traffic lights. And so, I crossed the road while the signal was red for me. I heard the loud hooting of a car and screeching of tyres, and as I looked up, I saw a black car approaching at a high speed, quickly closing in on me. I became so terrified, I froze. It was like my feet suddenly turned into lead. I didn’t react. I just stood there and let the odds fall where they had to. Well, the car managed to break just centimetres away for me. I was shaking so hard I had to hold on to the bonnet of the car to stop from falling, and while all this happened, I never moved an inch from where I had first frozen.

Fear, that’s what it does to you! It keeps you frozen in one place. It debilitates you. It makes you lose your capacity to act rationally. It makes you question who you are. It is nothing positive, yet, it is inevitable. There is no way to avoid it. It is the sad part of our reality as humans. It comes over all of us. So, how exactly must we deal with it? Some would say fight against it, build up your courage. Others would say, yield to it, tread with caution. And others would say wait for it to go away. In that case, you might wait forever. I say ignore it completely. Yes, pay no attention to it at all. Do the very things that make you afraid, as if you were not afraid. Have Esther’s attitude!

She had lived her whole married life under a false identity. But, when she found out that her people were condemned to death, she reached a crossroads. She could either remain silent, watch her whole nation being wiped out completely, including her beloved uncle, or she could approach her husband, the king, without his summon, risk being put to death for it, reveal her true identity, risk being to death for it, and plead for her people’s salvation, and again, you guessed it, risk being put to death for it. She definitely had all the odds against her, and every reason to be afraid. Yet, she chose to ignore her fear. She told herself that if she had to die, she would, but act she must. And so, she approached the king, and she was spared, revealed her identity, and she was spared, saved her people, and once again was spared.

So, what are you afraid of? It’s time to start acting! Go, speak to your boss about the revolutionary ideas you have been keeping inside of you for so long. If he rejects them, so be it, it’s his loss, but, he just might end up promoting you. Accept to go out on the date with the man you are in love with. If he ends up hurting you like all the rest, you will survive as you did before, but he just might end up marrying you and making you happy. Apply for the bursary or the job you want, even though you don’t qualify for it. If they reject your application, you have nothing to lose, but they just might accept it and give you a chance. In other words, you have nothing to lose by ignoring your fears and taking action, but everything to gain. And, you have nothing to gain, by yielding to your fear, but everything to lose. As you make your way towards your boss’ office, or say yes to the date, or write that application letter, you probably will still be afraid. Your heart will beat fast, you will doubt and question yourself, but do it anyway. Come out of your comfort zone. Do not let your fear control you. It should not decide how you act and behave. If there’s anything you heed from reading this, heed this: your fear has absolutely no hold over you whatsoever! It has no power to defeat you. The only thing your fear does is, it leads you to defeat yourself. You become your own worst enemy! Just don’t give it that much attention! It is not worth it.

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