Fear is probably the most misunderstood friend of all.
I’ve always had strange friends. In Junior High, I was friends with a kid named Ray. He never talked to anyone. Except me. We became best friends. In college, I befriended a homeless guy named Dale. He lived near the College of Liberal Arts at Boston University, and I learned more about life from him than from any class my entire sophomore year.
So it makes sense that almost all my life, one of my closest friends has been fear, the most strange and misunderstood friend there is.
Like most people, I grew up hating fear. Who likes fear, right? Who wants to be scared? It’s not fun, it’s not enjoyable… But perhaps that’s because we’re always looking at it wrong. Personally? I’ve come to LOVE my fear. Why? Because fear tells me I’m on the right track.
Everyone always asks me if after close to 400 skydives under my belt, if I’m still scared when I jump. The answer, without question, is 100% “yes.”
See, being scared keeps me sharp. It tells me that my mental acuity is working at 100%. Because, let’s face it – if I’m about to fall out of a plane from almost three miles above the earth, and I’m NOT scared? Then there’s REALLY something wrong.
I love being scared. It tells me I’m on the right path. My fear of a new project, or a new startup, or even the fear of being worried that I’m not doing well enough as a Dad… It keeps me sharp. It keeps me focused on improving. Fear tells us to do the scary thing, finish the job, and get the hell home.
My fear tells me I’m on the right path, and your fear should tell you the same thing. I believe if you’re not scared from time to time by what you’re doing in your life, then your goals and dreams aren’t big enough.
So the next time you get scared… Remember that fear is a misunderstood friend. Embrace it. Love that friend. Welcome it into your life. And let that which scares you push you ever forward to new and amazing experiences.
To occasionally being afraid, (and it being a good thing,)
PS: If you’re an entrepreneur, and want to use your fear to help grow your company beyond your wildest dreams, check out the private entrepreneurs group I founded. We’re close to 200 members strong, all around the world – and we’re excited to have you!
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Thanks for your wonderful ideas as I tweek the direction of my plane toward radiant health and happiness!
I accept that my brain is essentially on an evolved autopilot survival system reacting to environmental changes and societal influences.
I love your idea to kickstart dopamine flow with exercise so it accumulates past my neuro thresholds to get cool things done.
I’ve also had success with a task timer. For example focused decluttering for 30 minutes. This provides a sense of accomplishment to a chore that is never really done.
Neurologist and teacher, Robert M Sapolsky, has a super book called “Behave” which helped me figure out how to optimize myself.
Thanks for your inspirations! You are the best!