The Fear Bucket

September 14, 2013

This past week I’ve been thinking a lot about my fears. Most  of them are minor – like out-of-my-comfort zone type fears. But there is definitely one that is a certifiable phobia -- my fear of butterflies. The scientific name for this phobia is lepidopterophobia – quite a mothful! (da-duh cha!). And although most people laugh at the thought of someone being afraid of a harmless and peaceful creature like a butterfly, I have legitimate freak-out sessions when one (yes, just one) comes near me. 

But, here’s the thing – fear is just a self-created emotion. It can be controlled, and it can be overcome. I use to be deathly afraid of heights. As a child I would hide on the floor of the car when my parents drove through the mountains. And, in 6th grade, I was at a retreat with my class and during a hiking excursion, I beame terrified and had to hold on to my teacher’s shirt for most of the hike until I felt comfortable enough to go it alone. It probably wasn’t until college, when I chose to attending a school in a city whose elevation was 8,000 feet, that I finally got over my fear of heights. If I wanted to drive home to visit my parents, I had to drive through mountains – skirting curves that dropped off to the valley below, so I forced myself to get over that fear. Now I can say that I hike and climb and fly and don’t have an ounce of fear in me when I do those things. 

So, taking a cue from the popular bucket list idea, I have decided to start my own special one. I’m calling it my Fear Bucket. And, I’ll start with the biggest one I have – butterflies. I figure that if I can face that fear, the rest of them will be a piece of cake. 

And lucky for me, there’s a butterfly museum nearby (**shutter**). 

Here are some of the other fears I’ve added to the bucket – most of them are very minor, but as a shy and reserved person, they are things that definitely make me feel uncomfortable. And that is why I want to confront them!

  • Start a conversation with a random person
  • Eat alone at a restaurant
  • Ask a guy out on a date
  • Read a poem at an open mic night
  • Perform one of my songs in front a group of strangers
What would you say is your biggest fear? And, how would you like to overcome it?

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Words to Inspire

"One cannot consent to creep when one has an impulse to soar." ~Helen Keller