It’s big, scary, and always hovering just out of sight. You feel it lurking behind you, a constant presence in your life, but when you turn around, nothing is there. Maybe you call it anxiety, worry or stress.
I do, too. Most of the time.
But I’m learning to see it for what it really is – not some formless, foreboding entity outside of my control, but something much more intimidating: fear.
Think about it. Why do we worry? Why the anxiety and stress? Because we’re afraid that something will go wrong and we’ll be unable to handle it. And unlike a lot of fears that we can reason away, this is one that doesn’t respond well to logic because deep in our gut we know there is a very real possibility that life could go wrong. Someone might get sick. Go missing. Die. We may lose a phone, a job, a family member. They might let us down, break our hearts, laugh at our dreams. We may get hurt, cause hurt, or be unable to stop the ones we love from hurting. We may risk it all and end up with empty hands.
Anything could happen.
And truthfully? Some of it will. That’s what’s so scary. Nobody goes through life unscathed. Shit happens, and it happens to good people.
In other words,
The Worst Thing That Could Possibly Happen Probably Will –
But if we always play it safe – avoid the risks, lock away our creativity to avoid rejection, keep everyone we care about on a short leash in an attempt to protect them – we give The Worst more power than it really has. We allow the what-if to dictate the what-is.
Maybe that’s The Worst – allowing the lurking shadows to suck the light from the days that sparkle instead of simply embracing them and revelling in the knowledge that, right here, right now, we’re all okay.