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Overcoming Your Fears

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Overcoming Your Fears

Excerpt from “A Woman of Wisdom” by Caroline Joy Adams

Chapter 3: You Are a Woman Overcoming Your Fears
On the Way to Your Dreams and
Embracing New Possibilities All Along the Way...

As Mary Manin Morrisey states in “Building Your Field of Dreams”: "This is the moment of transformation for all of us. None of us relishes facing our fear, but our dream exists beyond the borders of that fear." Yet what often stops us from even beginning to access our true gifts and enter the realm of our dreams is fear. At times, it is so tremendously difficult to get beyond that underlying fear, and to force ourselves to move forward. But we just cannot let ourselves be confined by those deep-rooted fears to a life of limitation, of unlived dreams.

For everything worth really doing or having
requires that we move forward in new directions,
take courageous risks, release and let go of our fears...
that we open our hearts fully...
enter the space of openness to new possibilities...
and allow our courage to come forth and override our fear...

Sometimes our fears are so strong because we intuitively sense that we are about to be asked to step through a powerful doorway of transformation, into a new realm that we are afraid we are not prepared to enter. It may be one we would not freely choose to enter, one we would never consciously invite ourselves into. Yet we find ourselves forcibly swept inside anyway, and are simply not allowed to exit until we have learned the deep lessons the place within is offering us.

This experience takes us to the very core of our selves. I know that walking through the doorway of my own fears and out the other side has been one of the most powerfully transformative experiences of my life. For seven long and difficult years, I was married to a man whom I loved deeply, but whose unhealed childhood wounds spilled over into all aspects of our relationship, making even the most basic communication often impossible. Still, I was intensely committed to doing everything in my power to make the marriage work, thinking that it would be best for my daughter to keep our family together.

But a part of me, underneath it all, stayed in the marriage not only because of the love that was present and quite real, but also from a deep sense of fear. I was terrified of the very idea of having to survive on my own as the sole support of my daughter and myself, should he ever leave us. Yet one unforgettable May morning - ironically, it was Mother’s Day, the year that my daughter was just five - he made his choice.

No longer able to deal with his own emotional demons and remain a husband and father, he packed his possessions and drove off at sunrise in a U-Haul truck, leaving me to pick up the pieces of my life alone. Overnight I was transformed into a single mother of a young child, unaware of my real resources, and suddenly forced to confront the deepest fear of my life. I was overwhelmed at first, almost paralyzed, afraid I would never be able to cope with this new life circumstance.

Gradually, over the first year or two, I moved, one slow step at a time, through all the stages of grieving, and layers of fear. I began to peel them away, one by one by one, replacing them with layers of new awareness and newfound strength and confidence. Awareness that yes, I could go on alone, and learn to take care of myself. I could handle being a single parent to my child. I could make a home for us, one that was modest, perhaps, but infinitely and finally peaceful - and increasingly full of joyful moments, gratitude, and love.

It has been a long, hard journey, and an empowering and exhilarating one as well. Along the way, I have come to let go of many of my preconceived ideas of how life should be lived, or can be lived. In reality, since change is constant, we simply must be able to navigate the journey wherever it takes us - with all the grace and wisdom that we can possibly call forth at every stage.

As a result of this unexpected turn in my own life journey, I now have an inner knowing that I can walk through the fire of my deepest fears - and I can survive, and even thrive once again. This has brought me to a place of openness to all possibilities - which feels like a fine place to be. For the journey of life really is a mysterious and magnificent adventure, and a new chapter of your life, one brimming with infinite possibilities, is before you at every moment, just waiting to unfold.

As Marianne Williamson says in "A Woman’s Worth": "When a woman rises up in glory, her energy is magnetic, and her sense of possibility contagious!" Yet in order to get to the place where we can shine forth, radiant with possibility, we often do have to traverse first through the darkest of times. I imagine that you too have at times had to face the darkness and find your way back towards the light - and have been transformed in powerful ways in the process. For all things of beauty truly are birthed from the darkness into the light... Live now for a few moments with these questions. As you look deeply into the Mirror of Transformation, take some time to acknowledge yourself for every deep fear you have had to confront and overcome, and every new possibility that you have opened to or are opening to right now!

What new possibilities are you now creating or opening up to?

What are the fears you have had to confront and overcome along the way?

How has it felt to have moved through some of those fears?

 In what ways are you now transforming yourself, and rising up and becoming more of who you are meant to be?

What fears are you working through right now in the process?

"A Woman of Wisdom" at Amazon.com


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Last updated: 08/15/08

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