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We all fear.

We all fear.

We all have fears.

I have been asking my yoga classes this week to write down on a small piece of paper, what they fear. I told them there were no right or wrong answers. Fear is not always bad, that is why we are all here now. Our ancestors were afraid of something, ran and survived.

Healthy fears can keep us safe but giving into your fears can debilitate you. Fear can stop your dreams from becoming reality. Fear can keep you from living your life fully.

There is something powerful to me about owning and naming my fears.

I told them some of my fears:

I am afraid of failure

I fear snakes

I fear tight spaces

Sometimes I put myself in situations that force me to confront my fears. Some fears I will not confront, like snakes… never snakes. But going back to get my master’s degree was scary for me. I worried that I couldn’t do it, that I wasn’t smart enough. I got my master’s degree and I excelled in all of my classes.

When I was younger, I was afraid of speaking in public. As a young adult, I was involved with an incredible volunteer organization in Lubbock, TX. One year I was on a committee that often had to speak in front of a group of 200 women. I told the head of the committee I was on, that one of my goals was to be more comfortable speaking in front of others. She made me speak at most monthly meetings. I was terrified, but it got easier each time. Now I ask to speak to groups. I faced that fear. But I still have fears.

I hate that feeling you get in your chest when you are afraid.

That tightness. That anxious feeling that almost hurts and makes your breathing shallow.

One thing that I like to do, on New Year’s Eve, is write my fears on a piece of paper and then burn the paper. It is a way for me to control and let go of those fears. Some I immediately pick back up and put in my invisible backpack of worries and fears to carry around with me. I recognize how some of them are holding me back, how they are controlling me, and I let them go.

I wanted to see if this experience of writing them down and letting them go would help my yogis. I told them I was going to use this for a blog this week but then I would burn the fears they shared with me. Some of my yogi’s fears:

· Hurting others

· Losing my memory

· Not being able to communicate

· My anxiety

· Mice

· My house being broken into

· Losing my parents

· Losing my eyesight

· Snakes

· Being irrelevant

· Ferris wheels

· Messing my kids up

· Travel to a foreign country

· That he/she will never change

· Fear of losing myself

· Failure

· Weakness

· Not being able to take care of myself

· Cancer

· Heights

· Drowning

· Bees

· Failure, so much so that sometimes I don’t try

· Not being able to pay my bills

· Abandonment

· Negativity

· Lack of reason

· Incapacitating injury

· Losing my spouse

We all fear.

We all have fears.

I am afraid of the coronavirus and the unknown challenges we will face because of the virus. I am afraid but I tamper that fear with my belief in the power of community.

The desire to help.

To share what we can with our neighbors.

The fear I have from this virus is small compared to the confidence I have in people to comfort and care for each other.

I stop. I breathe. I believe.

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