Facing Our Greatest Fear For the Sake of Happiness

We have come a long way in this series. We have addressed the energy drains in our life, removed the unnecessary responsibilities, addressed the mental games that prevent us from taking risks, and created some outstanding goals for ourselves to keep us aligned on what is most important in our lives.

One caveat remains: in the end, we are our own greatest adversary. Excluding rare and unfortunate circumstances, we must realize that the buck stops with us when it comes to the life we choose to live. We may want to blame it on our parents, spouse, friends, community, or government, but in the end, the decision to thrive and not just survive life is solely ours. The great news is that not only can we be our own greatest adversary, we can also be our own greatest advocate. This requires us to face those demons in our closet that prevent us from taking risks. We spoke about this briefly earlier when we addressed the mindsets that can either propel or prevent us from living the life we have dreamed of living. Another large obstacle getting in the way of living the essential life is our fear of mortality.

Embracing Our Mortality

We either busy ourselves with mundane tasks or plug ourselves into some device to prevent thinking about things we do not want to consider. With the time being consumed by these two activities, we rationalize in our mind that we do not have time to take risks as we are already too busy (think about the self administered shock study in the previous blog). We end up choosing the comfort of the safe harbor which keeps us in survival mode rather than entering the stormy seas of fulfillment which propels us toward risk. Risk always reminds us, in one way or another, of our mortality and of our disappointment with of the life we have lived up to this point in the face of our mortality.

Not only might we choose the safe and unfulfilling life over that which forces us to consider our mortality, we will often make poor decisions in the attempt to keep from awakening consciousness of the reality of our mortality. The result is psychological and emotional suicide.

Fearing our mortality is a poor excuse for not living a full life. It in fact ushers the very death sentence we set out to escape, but through a different (and much more visceral) way than originally feared. By embracing our mortality (not in some kind of morbid way) in a way that helps us understand that life is a gift and this gift has been granted to us with a purpose (see my blog on the Ordered Life for more insight), it frees us from the burden of feeling like we must control every element of our lives for the sake of survival. By realigning our focus on life as a gift that is meant to be shared, we then have purpose. With purpose comes meaning, and with meaning we have the foundation for a fulfilling life.

Now is the time to begin living a life that focuses only on that which is essential, stripping away as many mundane responsibilities as possible, making room for the creative genius you are and for the experiences that await you with family and friends. Good luck and don’t hesitate to contact me for any reason as I’m here to help!

Next up, once we have our goals set out and we have a clear path, how do we keep on this narrow path without the distractions of the hundreds of mundane responsibilities that do need our attention. We are now venturing into the organized life…next Wednesday.

What is one thing you might be holding onto that is outside of your control (i.e. fear of failure, fear of success, fear of disease, happiness of your child, etc.) and what is one thing you can do today to let go of that thing, realigning your energy to what is in your control (i.e. living a more disciplined life at work, exercising and eating right, determining how to teach your child what it means to be trustworthy, honest and faithful)?