A writing Challenge
I was asked today, what am I afraid of? That’s a loaded question to be honest. I have many deep and dark fears. I can’t pinpoint one of them to be the sole obstruction that keeps me up at night. However, I can list them and the reasons as to why they hold a grasp on my psyche and haunt me. For me, I’m afraid of many things, many are common, many are not. However the things that I am afraid of the most involve my trajectory and who I am as a person. What am I Afraid of the most? They are as follows:
Fear of being great
Marianne Williamson once said in my favorite quote “ our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate, our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.”. This quote rests in my mind even to this day after watching Coach Carter in 2005 ( Where i first heard the quote). I’m afraid of being the greatest possible person I can be at times.
Almost to the point of self-destruction. I’m terrified of what my best possible self looks like. I shrink so that other people may feel better about themselves.
Naturally, I intimidate people around me because of how I speak and carry myself. Because of how creative I am. Because of how brilliant I am. Therefore, they feel inadequate around me, forcing me to want to mitigate my greatness to allow them to feel great. I learned recently that if I were to bask in my brilliance than others would subconsciously do the same. Thus, I began doing so. However, I still feel the fears of what I can become, trickle down my spine day in and day out. However, this fear drives me, you know the phrase if you’re afraid, do it? That’s this scenario.
Fear of failure/ expectations
I think we all have a fear of failing. Failure is a powerful tool. It can either motivate you or destroy you. Failure turns people against us. Failure can be our worst nightmare. I fear failing, because of the momentous expectations that were placed upon me as a child. Growing up I was an extraordinarily intelligent child who learned fast and accepted everyone for who they were.
I’m a compassionate person, who believed in the good in people.
Thus, many believed these characteristics to be world changing. Especially as a black man, or black child living in this world of systemic racism.
These pressures combined with the mountain of hopelessness that we live with created a lot of expectations on me from others and myself. Therefore, being afraid to fail is something that I live with every single day. The anxiety of thinking I should be far ahead of the place I’m currently in at life can consume me. It behooves me to be better, yet it can also take hold of my mental state. There are days I fear I’ll never reach my goals. This pressure I place on myself propels me, but it also keeps me up at night. I’m afraid to let down the people that count on me the most. I’m afraid to fail at being the greatest i can be.
However, it is also this fear of failure that pushes me. As much as I fear failing, I dive into this fear every single-day facing it. I want to feel. I want to not meet expectations that are set against myself. To learn the lessons that I need to learn. To push myself to be better every single day.
Fear of not being perfect
This is kind of building upon my fear of failure. However, I felt as though I should make it its own category. I’m a perfectionist. I believe that has a lot to do with the fact that I’m a Virgo, even those of you that don’t believe in astrology I want to apologize in advance.
However, I do believe in astrology as a Virgo.
I am a perfectionist.
Everything has to be aligned perfectly for me to do anything. But if something strays off course, I’ll get frustrated immediately and things go bad after that.
As a perfectionist I’m afraid of things not being perfect. I’m afraid of the temperature not being just right, of the scenario or setting going off course. It bothers me at times. It’s not something I’m as deeply afraid of as failing or being great. But, it is something that keeps me up at night from time to time. Being perfect is something I strive to be but not something I will be. As much as I want to be perfect I’ve accepted the fact that I’ll never be perfect because no one is perfect. But I want to do as much as possible to be as perfect as possible and then in any given scenario. And if I don’t I’ll live.
Fear of losing someone I love
Life is fragile. As powerful and creative as we are human beings, we are fragile, Our lives can be taken away at any given time for a myriad of reasons. There’s a saying that there are a million ways to die. And then the environments riddled with poverty and self-destruction the angel of death walks among us like a regular person.
I want to say that this occurs more frequent in black and brown communities with poverty and a lot of broken dreams and broken homes, there’s still a possibility of losing someone that you care about. I’ve experienced watching friends die due to gun violence or trauma, or depression taking their own lives.
The list goes on and on. And when you live in a world where there’s no hope sometimes it happens more frequently through a number of reasons. The fear of losing someone that I know or care about, or love can destroy me inside. This is because I don’t know how I’d react to that type of event. Especially someone that’s extremely close to me. I understand that death is a part of life. But there’s nothing beautiful in death. And then the time where death is frequent because of a virus that we have yet to contain, that is more scary each and every day.
In all honesty most of my fears are based off of my expectations for myself, and the fact that I have greatness within me than I’ve yet to tap into completely. And I’m well aware of that. I think it keeps me up at night because it makes me want to be better. So I allow these fears not to consume me, but to take hold of my psyche. Thus pushing me to create the world that channels my greatness to its most preeminent capacity . They say fear is a great motivator. My fears motivate me every single day every single moment as much as possible and I’m grateful for those fears.