“Now you probably think I’m going to tell you that you must become fearless in order to live a more creative life. But I’m not going to tell you that, because I don’t happen to believe it’s true. Creativity is a path for the brave, yes, but it is not a path for the fearless, and it’s important to recognize the distinction.” From Elizabeth Gilbert’s Big Magic.
Fine words from Elizabeth Gilbert. I fan girl over EG. She’s the powerhouse author behind Eat, Pray, Love. Her mission is to empower individuals, evoke creativity through self-awareness. Her tweets and Facebook posts always make me smile. Enlightening and true, embracing and uplifting. In a world of some ugliness, there is beauty beyond and in yourself, and Elizabeth reminds us.
But she gets real too. Breaks down feelings why those ugly, negative thoughts arise. How to be more creative, let go of what holds you back.
Importantly, how to silence your fear.
We all have fear, even the most egotistical people (not naming names!), have fears.
Fear is boring.
Fear is a feeling I struggle with from time-to-time. Fear of failure, fear of heights, fear of being a bad mom – small fears, in retrospect, that are difficult to shake. I’m seriously not a fan of heights. Anything taller than three stories, make me nervous (top floor of the Hancock building? Ekk!).
I’m not a “fearful” person, I don’t live in “fear,” but the feeling sneaks up, brooding and pulling my thoughts. An inner fear, negative opinions. Even as I write this, I am divulging enough, or is fear pulling me back?
Fear can be good in some regard. Empowers a person a little, a gentle push to reach further or a leap of faith to the unknown.
Without fear, there is no progress, the willingness to take a chance.
The first time I ever rode in an airplane, I was ten years old. This was in my grandpa’s four seater puddle jumper (he’s a pilot). The plane was TINY, a tin box with a propeller and wings. I took my plastic pink glasses off, afraid my glasses would break midair, and put on a brave face. My big sister was with me, she wasn’t scared. There was no way I could, or she wouldn’t let me live it down. My grandpa was cool as a cucumber, told me to hang on for the ride. The plane lifted in air with ease, gliding across the sky as the ground became smaller, like green patches stitched together in a quilt. The ride was relaxing, we passed above cornfields and small towns, my grandpa knew each town by name. We even flew over our farm. Eventually, I put my glasses back on. I wasn’t afraid.
I was super nervous for my first day of college, a history class full of strangers, with more confidence than me. At the end of class, I had a new friend. No other college course bothered me again.
Fear allows you to think and act outside of your comfort zone, ride the edge of uncomfortable. And, I promise you, clarity is at the end.
Everyone and anyone can overcome their fears.
The fear I’m referring to is, the personal demons, the ones that nag at you, no one sees or knows. Personal fears. I found Big Magic, my words of wisdom, a book I can pick up at any time, read a chapter or two, or reread another. A reminder to never fear, but embrace and conquer. Find the creativity I want, buried under all that ugly fear. Because every one of us can be creative and has the spirit to, without fear.