“Life offers no guarantees, no assurances that our love will be reciprocated, and no control over the outcome of our efforts. Living a big life, full of purpose, connection, and contribution, requires an unprecedented act of trust and vulnerability.” – D Mahle
I always wanted to belong; to feel connected, feel loved, feel alive. I wanted people to like me, to respect me, to recognize my contribution in the world. I wanted to do something worth remembering, to create something beautiful, to help heal the suffering. I wanted my life to matter. But I was afraid.
I didn’t know who I was. I didn’t feel my power. I didn’t trust my heart. I was anxious – afraid of failure, rejection, and isolation. And I felt stuck playing a small game in a big world that I knew needed my gifts, my skills, and my heart, now more than ever.
It wasn’t long ago that I discovered a lesson that is changing my life forever: When I believe that I am powerful, connected, and capable of love – beyond my wildest imagination – I am.
My fears are all illusions; ancient stories that my younger self created to ‘protect’ me from harm. The only way to release them is to honor them; to tell that younger place within me that I am safe now and I no longer need them to protect me.
When I deny or fight my fear, it strengthens its choke-hold. When I embrace it and give it space to breathe, it loses its power over me.
Fear is rooted in shame. Brené Brown defines shame as “the intensely painful feeling or experience of believing that we are flawed and therefore unworthy of love and belonging.” Shame is fueled by silence and the illusion of our fundamental separateness. Continue reading