Letting Go of the "Comfortable" Fears
How do you all release your fears and find the whys of your dreams? Asking for a friend...
I’m finding it especially hard to let go of certain fears. Even naming them and seeing them for what they are, unhelpful and limiting, I cannot seem to loosen my death grip on them. And it may help in acknowledging that maybe, once, they were comforting and useful to me. And in a way the inability to let go is because of comfort. I am technically more comfortable in the fear’s presence than without it. Without it is untrod ground. Unknown terrain.
There are many fears I’ve accumulated over my life thus far. Some from how I grew up with the emotional disconnect I felt and the differences that I understood in myself from others. Some from learning through many small and minute ways that I, as a woman, was not supposed to make mistakes. No, I was supposed to care for others, be calm, and nice. Have it all. Sugar and spice and everything nice, extremely light on the spice. And some, now, are combinations of everything that came before, old messages and dead coping mechanisms that keep me from pursuing my dreams.
Because these days I do have them, dreams. For a time I lived thinking that they were dead and gone. That my passions had died, or had always been dead. That’s the thing, though, there are times that I can remember having dreams and other times in which I felt so hopeless and without drive or passion. I always felt at odds with the fluctuation between states. Why couldn’t I stay in the high, but you cannot have the highs without the lows. Acceptance goes long distances here.
Recently I did an inventory of my deepest fears surrounding a creative career (an inventory process I picked up from Luna Dietrich). I was most specifically thinking about selling my art as a business and have found that many also apply to the other creative aspects of my interests. It has been interesting to see the broad categories:
Not being enough/doing enough
Losing myself/free time/autonomy
Making mistakes, not being perfect
Part of me is frustrated because many of the specifics of these categories have come up before and often there are periods of time that I can work around or even straight through the fear. And many other, longer, periods where I am at their mercy whether I can see them or not.
Radical acceptance is hard when you’ve been taught that different is wrong or othered. My fears are directed both at myself and my actions and I must face that I will never be perfect. I will and have made mistakes…It is just an ongoing journey of understanding, acceptance and love; and something that I seem to need to remind myself of every few months and years.
But there is also a need to let them go. As much as my brain wants to cling for dear life onto these fears I must accept them and let them go. They will fuck me over if I keep hanging onto them. Even if the thought of life without them terrifies me, it terrifies me even more to hold onto them and let them stop me from pursuing the life I’m beginning to dream for myself. I do not want to wake up when I’m older and think sadly of the dreams I had in my thirties.
I understand that dreams grow and change but I’m not going to sit around waiting for mine to change because then I may never really pursue any of them. And what would be the point then?
As they say in the story writing world I’ve been diving into the whole point of a story is not really what happens so much as what the hero needs (not wants). The story is truly the third rail of the inner dialogue and turmoil that gets them there. It is the why of it all.
I’ve explored the whys of my fears and my trauma, a lot. It is part and parcel to getting at your mental health. Exploring the whys of my dreams? That is not something I’ve really considered and something that I’m thinking will become important to manifesting my dream life. It is really squishy though and makes me feel very weird. Puts me on the spot to figure out for myself why I truly want to do certain things. And doing my best to hold space for the negative thoughts without talking myself out of dreams.
Is this why people do those dream boards? I wouldn’t know the first place to begin…and I’m going to try anyway. Though it likely will not be a dream board. I’ll figure something out, go my own weird way and find something that works for me.
PS. This is my current work that is in progress. It has taken some time to get this far because I've been focusing elsewhere (writing and self discovery) and it is a completely original concept inspired by Allana Solo, who I've drawn as a young girl before, as the Jedi Queen. She's got inspirations in her styling from the Dathomir Witches and Hapes Consortium as I've decided to interpret them. Her Nexu companion doesn't have his teeth drawn yet so they look a bit friendlier than they might otherwise... Also I'm so happy with how the hands turned out, my execution of hand drawing is improving!