We are all afraid of something. It doesn’t matter if you are just a regular person on the street or a special forces operative or the President of the United States. There are things in our lives that get our hearts pounding and cause us to act in ways we wouldn’t normally behave because the consequences of whatever it is we’re dealing with are so comparatively high to us. Every person on the planet struggles with overcoming their fear of whatever it is they want to avoid.
Where we run into issues is that fear can sometimes cause us to do things we regret later in life. Being overcome by emotion almost invariably causes us to act irrationally, and not thinking rationally typically ends in a less than optimal result. When we make decisions with our hearts rather than our heads, we give ourselves up to random chance because feelings don’t consider all the variables. It just yearns for what it wants, and if it just wants to avoid feeling afraid it capitulates to whatever it has to in order to get rid of that feeling.
Most people don’t really think about fear these days. We have our comfortable lives full of routine and convenience. The news headlines tells us about the terrible things happing in our country and around the world, and for a moment we feel a bit of anxiety, but once we scroll past the article or close out of the video that feeling passes like a menacing cloud back into the sunshine of our lives and we feel fine again. The average American feels no reason to be afraid.
Unfortunately, the world isn’t as safe as it appears to be. There are always forces acting against you, even if you’re just an average person living an average life. We like to think that we’re not involved in politics, but that viewpoint is sorely mistaken. The people who struggle to get into power in this country are mostly interested in manipulating the average American into going along with whatever they want to get done, even if it isn’t in our best interest. The more the politicians group together, the more of a threat they are to you because the group becomes more important than the people.
It is natural for many of us to want to bury our heads in the sand and just not look at the problem. We have enough issues to deal with just putting food on the table and paying the bills, and all those political issues just seem so far away and not relevant to our daily lives. Unfortunately, these people are making decisions that directly affect you and me and we ignore their actions at our own peril.
The world doesn’t stand still, even if we wish that it would. There are always things going on, be it in our government or in other countries or even just in our own neighborhoods and cities. Some of these things are good and some bad, and the bad ones can only be addressed properly when the community as a whole is informed and makes a firm decision. America is known for being a beacon of light in the darkness of the world, mostly because we’ve historically acted when others wouldn’t.
When we look back on recent history, we can see how being afraid ended up hurting more people than standing up for what was right. The biggest example I can think of was Neville Chamberlain, who was so afraid of Nazi Germany that he refused to push back against Hilter’s push into other areas of Europe. This emboldened the already aggressive German military and encouraged them to keep pushing more and more until finally the Allies were forced to respond. Had Chamberlain had the courage to stand up to Hitler, it is entirely possible that World War II could have been avoided, or at least drastically limited.
As we move through our daily lives, we rarely have the opportunity to consider the consequences of our inaction. Many times we can look at a choice to do something and imagine what might happen if we act, but typically it is fear that forces us into inaction. As stated earlier, this state of fear causes us to make bad decisions that usually end up hurting us anyway. We know something is wrong, but our fear forces us to sit by and let it happen. The issue has to be dealt with one way or another, and we’re going to feel the consequences whether we want to or not.
There are many things that we are all dealing with in the world today. Pandemics, aggressive countries seeking to expand, politicians who are more concerned with their own bank accounts than the interests of the public, and a society that was rapidly shifting toward insanity and is now starting to swing back. All of these things directly affect us, and whether we act or not there will be consequences for each of us. We can have an effect on what those consequences will be, and we will usually be hurt far worse by just sitting by and letting it happen, so why not have a little courage and stand up for what we believe in?
What do you think about courage? Is it just for the powerful people, or are you obligated to overcome your fears as well? How can you act in your own life to bolster your courage and affect change in the world around you? All of us struggle with putting ourselves out there and becoming exposed to risk, but that risk is there whether we do anything or not. There is a much better chance of getting a more positive result if we act rather than hiding in the shadows.
New posts in your inbox
If you liked this post and would like to support the blog, please visit the support page!