Making a Difference in the Face of Fear
Contributed by Gary Eyring
The collective consciousness of America appears turbulent and anxious. The fears don’t seem to be abating:
- The threat of war and terrorism
- Financial Markets are tumbling
- World Economies are sputtering
- Real Estate is fragile
- Health Care, Energy and Food costs are increasing
- Job Losses and insecurity are mounting
- The need for more performance with less resources are rising
With all these fears and anxieties, how can I cope? What can I do to make a difference?
First of all, denying my fears doesn’t help. In my bravado, I may not admit my anxiety. I may only look at the positive possibilities. Yet, my fears lurk just below the surface, and the tension in my body tells me that I’m “fluffing” up, pretending that it will all go away. While it may be true that “problems” are temporary, they are also real and not to be ignored or denied. In fact, my denial insures that my fears will continue. My authentic self knows the truth of my anxieties, and only by facing my fears will I create the possibility of moving beyond them.
Secondly, after I face my fears, what then? My ego stands in the way of new truths, new possibilities. My ego is a "point of view that defends itself from other points of view". As I allow the "truth" of others to be expressed, I create new paths, new possibilities, that before were unavailable because of my resistance, my defending my position or point of view.
Finally, if I want to make a difference, I need to start with myself. I can change my attitude, my beliefs, my behaviors. I can only control myself.
However, even as I follow a new path of my convictions, my fears of the unknown will re-assert themselves, and I will need to apply, again and again, skills such as "letting go", "being present", "non-defensiveness", and "active listening"
. I will need the support of like-minded people and a strong discipline to overcome the habitual thinking that sustains my fear.
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- are demonstrated in The Open Organization’s "Leadership from the Inside Out" workshop!
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FIRST, I NEED TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN MY OWN LIFE! THEN, THAT DIFFERENCE WILL AFFECT THE LIVES OF THOSE IN CONTACT WITH ME. THEN........???!!!!