Over the years, it has slowly become one of my all-time favorite four-letter words. The other one is “Pain.”
I’ve already written about pain, discussing its place as one of my favorite tools for growth.
Fear is my other favorite tool. I won’t be so bold as to claim that I conquer all my fears. The reason why fear is my other favorite tool is because it always points true north. I’ll explain that in a bit.
I’ve seen fear cripple great people who have chosen to submit to it. I’ve seen it destroy the dreams of dreamers, silence would-be heroes, and stifle passion and love in the hearts of the truly passionate. I’ve seen it turn those with great potential – potential toinspire and change the world – into pitiful cowards. I’ve seen it destroy lives and hurt people immeasurably.
I’ve been there myself, on many occasions. It’s something I struggle with daily. It’s also something I’m actively choose to overcome.
This is how I’ll proceed.
The first step to overcoming fear: admitand ownyour fear.
“Okay, that’s great, Chase. You can talk the talk, why don’t you walk the walk? Admit your fears.”
Fine. I will.
I’m terrified to move across the country at the end of this month. I’m moving to Charleston, South Carolina to pursue furthering my job with Praxis. I’ve never done anything like this – moving from California to Arizona for my work with Joel Grimes was a piece of cake – I used to live in AZ, and one of my best friends lives there. I’m not super close with anyone on the East Coast. For all intents and purposes, I’m moving 3,000 miles across the country, straight into the unknown.
I’m afraid to continue writing these blog posts. The stuff I’ve written has been valuable, but easy. I haven’t been diving into the nitty gritty details that I said I would… the important stuff that requires me to reveal the things I’m ashamed of, the things I try avoiding on a daily basis. The deeply dark history in my family, as well as my own struggles with pride, ego, cowardice, and health issues I’ve dealt with that have caused me shame over the years.
I’m afraid to finish my Quotes Worth Considering series. Like my above point, it requires me to delve deep, to commit my thoughts to the camera/microphone, and to own the fact that I haven’t done it on a reasonable timeline, the timeline I initially wanted to.
As silly as it sounds, I’m even fearful of doing something I’ve wanted to do far more than photography – creative and communicative filmmaking. I’ve been a total coward, and haven’t followed through on releasing any of the many films I’ve started and never finished in the past few years. I’m working on it.
I admit it – I haven’t been man enough to face these things.
The second step to overcoming fear: Identifying the value of what truly lies in the unknown…
Truth is the thing that we’re most afraid of. The critical factor.
Truth reveals us for what we really are, as opposed to what we make ourselves out to be.
The fact of the matter is that by actively choosing to deprive ourselves and those around us from truth, we serve no one – not even ourselves. By choosing to embrace our fears and our most authentic selves, we open up the opportunity for connection with compassionate individuals that will help us and support us in embracing our fears. What a beautiful process!
The truth does indeed set us free. To live our lives as our most authentic selves, operating from a place of love, compassion, and courage… this is a life well-lived. It’s something to be proud of.
The third step in overcoming fear: Action.
I’m taking a stand against my fears.
I would rather die on my feet than live on my knees. I’m making a commitment to set my ego aside, and to move forward while operating from that place of love, courage, and truth, and to be as forthcoming as I can in my creation from here on out. I’m tackling the fears I listed above head on. Rather than telling you how I’m going to do it… I’m just going to show you. Walk the walk… don’t talk the talk.
Here’s my first step: Let me tell you exactly why overcoming fear is so important to me.
My mother? She killed herself when I was 16, because she couldn’t face the reality she’d allowed to happen in her life. She chose fear, not truth. She ran.
My biological father? He has a family – a family that literally doesn’t know I exist, because he refuses to admit had an affair, and that’s how I was created. He’s choosing fear, not truth. He’s running.
I am deeply, deeply ashamed of these truths… but they are a part of my story.
Those choices are their own. Both of them have deeply wounded their loved ones as a result of their actions. I am their son, and because of their inherent inability to overcome their own fears, I almost feel destined to do the same.
I will not choose fear.
I choose to be the antithesis of their destructive actions.
I will choose truth, love, and courage, the tools my true Father has blessed me with. I will walk continue walking forward, boldly and assuredly, alongside Him.
The Lord is my light and my salvation—
whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold of my life—
of whom shall I be afraid?
– Psalm 27:1