The Thing We Fear The Most

May 12


Paul N Liburd

Paul N Liburd

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It causes me to lie awake at night and makes my heart race when I try to relax. It dogs my every step like a shadow that will not flee but yet it holds the key to all of my...


I’m afraid of it,The Thing We Fear The Most Articles don’t know how to handle it, wish I didn’t have to deal with it but can’t get away from it. It keeps coming back to face me and when I see it approaching, I put it off or run away but it just returns and stands there in front of me. It causes me to lie awake at night and makes my heart race when I try to relax. It dogs my every step like a shadow that will not flee but yet it holds the key to all of my dreams. It won’t open the door for me unless I approach, but I’m so afraid of it that I am powerless to step forward. So I just stand there and stare at it and wish it would go away but yet I need it to stay, because my future depends on it.

We philosophise about it and use language to deconstruct it. We procrastinate when we avoid it and deem ourselves courageous when we step towards it. Many never overcome it but reach their graves still facing it.  However the few that do draw near to it, find that the fear of it is always greater than the pain of grasping it and the joy of passing through it always overshadows the dread of approaching it. The truly great make friends with it, they seek for it and feel bereft when they lose sight of it. They know the value of it and see the progress which can only be experienced on the other side of it. These are they who soar to higher heights and look back at it with gratitude, for the fact that they came to know and understand its worth.

What is ‘It’ for you? It may be the honest conversation you need to have or that difficult question you need to ask.  It may be the journey you need to begin or that cry for help you need to make.  It may be the growing pain through which you must pass or that feeling of weakness you need to admit.  It may be the diagnosis you need to obtain or that lifestyle change you need to make.  It may be the little child you need to affirm or that outstretched hand of peace that you need to shake.  It may be the apology you need to make or that person you need to forgive.  It may be the invitation you need to decline or that relationship you need to end.  It may be the tear you need to shed or the grief you need to share.  It may be the family you need to call or that exam you need to sit.  It may be the exercise programme you need to start or that application form you need to hand in. It may be the habit you need to kick or that dream you need to follow. It may look like the failure you can’t bear to face or the achievement, with its resultant high expectations that frightens you. 

It is what the eminent and the distinguished love to look back on, during times of memoir writing and succession planning. It is all these things and so much more and still it keeps changing and coming back again and again and yet one thing is clear; we need it. It is our déjà vu, the exit gate on our vicious circular road through which we must escape if we are ever to continue with our journey. It is the rite of passage through which we must pass on our way to greatness. 

No matter what ‘It’ is for you, or how you have related to it in the past, whether you have fought with it or avoided it; make it your friend.  Get to know it and accept it. Work with it. Appreciate the value of it. Become partners with it and allow it to be what it really is. It is your chance to move forward and another essential stepping-stone on your journey towards becoming the very best that you can be. Today is your opportunity. Step forward and become the master of ‘It’.

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