When we are afraid of being ourselves, we grind away the teeth of our personalities, believing this will help us fit in and earn other's approval. Life has taught me, however, that the truest friendships are formed and the most fun is had when we don’t use a façade to make others think we act or do things we don’t.
Fear of Standing out
As quoted by Marianne Williamson; “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people will not feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone and as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
Fear of Being Unprepared
There will never be a perfect time to pursue a life goal and you will never feel 100% ready. Every hobby and mentionable accomplishment I’ve ever had, I started unprepared and somewhat bewildered. Along the way I’ve made mistakes and it’s learning from those mistakes that gives me expertise. Even if you don’t feel completely ready, start whatever you want to do any way you can.
Fear of Failure
Making vital changes can be hard because we are afraid of making a mistake or failing altogether. What we are truly afraid of is facing difficult emotions like embarrassment or defeat. The truth is, emotions can’t hurt us or even affect us in any way unless we let them. Failure is also part of learning and growing and it’s through this learning that we become experts.
Fear of Change
Seeking comfort is the quickest road to boredom and discontentment. If nothing ever changed throughout our lives we wouldn’t learn, grow, or have any meaningful experiences. Embrace change as a chance to become a better and happier person.
When asked what is one way they would like to better themselves, almost every person I’ve talked to in the last two years said they would like to be more outgoing or confident with other people. Like fear of failure, this fear again stems from facing the difficult emotion of embarrassment. Start small, and continue making “leaps of faith” until social fears no longer bother you. Before you know it you’ll have more friendships and confidence than you ever imagined.