Friday, April 06, 2012

A to Z Challenge - Facets of Fear

For the A to Z Challenge, my topic is leadership and goal-setting. I am posting short excerpts from my book, Overcoming Obstacles with SPUNK! The Keys to Leadership and Goal-Setting, along with an inspiring photo. Enjoy and dream big!

Facets of Fear

Many anxieties are inherited when we are children, either from our parents or other close contacts. A mother’s fear of bridges might translate into a similar fear in her children. If we were never taught to swim, we might feel apprehensive toward water. Even prejudice, which qualifies as a fear of the unknown, can be passed from parents to children.

Other fears are learned through experience. A traumatic ordeal in front of a crowd of people can develop into a fear of public speaking. If a large dog knocks us down when we are very young, we might grow up to fear dogs in general. Negative experiences such as these contribute to the development of many fears. Often the original episode was not as traumatic as we recall, but the moment sticks in our minds. Over time, our brain exaggerates the experience, further fueling our fear.

Failure resides at the core of almost all fears. We are terrified of failing on every level: emotionally, intellectually, and physically. Failure questions our worth and value as a human being. Since we crave acceptance and approval, unsuccessful attempts to acquire these things devastates our self-image.


26 comments:

Kyra Lennon said...

Excellent post! it's incredible what fears we learn from others in our childhood.

Susan Roebuck said...

Oh, how right you are. As writers we're full of fear, aren't we? Like failing at getting good reviews, or even accepted...Now, I do have a fear of the telephone (just speaking on it!!!) I wonder where the hell THAT came from? Great post

Anna Smith said...

I think we need fear a little bit. When we overcome our fears we become stronger people :)

Universal Gibberish

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Susan, I fought a fear of the phone for years. Had to do with a job at UPS when I was younger. When you have to call people and tell them their package is lost, damaged, destroyed - we don't know where it is! - you really start to hate the phone.

Anna, we do grow stronger.

welcome to my world of poetry said...

Fear is an awful feeling and one can't run away from yourself when you have an irrational fear.
Good F post.
Yvonne.

Bish Denham said...

I've always been partial to this quote from Dune, by Frank Herbert.

"I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain."

Sue McPeak said...

Very thoughtful post, and a lesson to parents. Reflecting on a childhood fear factor with an attitude of 'what I learned'...a positive characteristic. Well done for the Letter F.

My theme is A-Z My Family Tree and F is for FANNIE and her FIVE Sisters. Hope you'll stop by...The BIG ARROW points the way...Sue-CollectInTexas Gal

DL Hammons said...

I have to laugh whenever I hear of somebody talking about the FEAR OF SUCCESS. What you discuss here is real...and the other...not so much! :)

Clarissa Draper said...

Yes, fear is so powerful. Especially the fear of failing. So people never try because the fear failing. Me, I'm afraid of dogs.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Bish, I remember that line from Dune.

DL, people do fear it.

Gossip_Grl said...

Loved your post. My mom almost drowned when she was three so she was terrified of large bodies of water. She made all of her kids take swimming lessons.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Our minds tend to make fear worse.

Tasha Seegmiller said...

Fear is a great motivator for me. I'm more afraid of what I will end up not being if I don't keep trying.

Johanna Garth said...

Great post Diane. I was thinking about how fears are inherited when I wrote my blog post about fear of trimming nails today!

Alyssa said...

Nice post! Fear is a very powerful emotion and can scar you forever. By the way I'm a new follower :)

My blog is:http://www.lifeisgood-forever21.blogspot.com

Tamara Narayan said...

I also hate calling people on the phone and have no idea why. Glad it's not just me.

Susanne Drazic said...

Hi Diane. Great post.

Karen Walker said...

Yes, we sure need to uncover our fears so we can address them as adults and not react as if we were still children.
Karen

Stacey said...

Great post. Fear of failure is awful, we can put so much pressure on ourselves that way. (Oh and I also hate phoning people - glad to see I'm not alone!)

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

It is difficult to overcome some fears. I learned to swim late and still hesitate in deep water. I came to writing late and I don't feel confident about lots of the skills I need.

~Sia McKye~ said...

I only have a few real fears and I worked hard at not transferring them to my son. But you're right, Diane, fear can be transferred to kids. Case in point, my sister is deathly afraid of spiders. Picture my 18 month old boy curious about a spider so he crawls close and watches. My sister happens to look over and sees what he's near and screams bloody murder. Baby cries, I jump three feet, Sister runs over and snatches up the baby and stomps the spider into goo. To this day, my son is afraid of spiders.

I think that failure is the basis of much professional fear, but don't discount the fear of success. It can be just as much of a dam as fear of failure, imo.

Sia McKye OVER COFFEE

harry @ GoalsonTrack.com said...

Quite true. Is there a second part to this post?

MOV said...

wow, great post! I agree with everything you wrote. this might be my new favorite blog. found you on the a to z, and will be back to read more!!

feel free to take a peek at my blog too if you have time, I am doing a travel theme:

http://wordcut.blogspot.com

best,
MOV

Donna Shields said...

I fear deep water. That was after watching my 4 year old niece nearly drowning. (I was 6 at the time). But all my kids LOVE the water. I swear if they could live in it they would.

Janyce said...

I really like the points made on negative experiences. Makes total sense and made me think, too.

Sarah Pearson said...

I've been afraid of strange dogs all my life. I tried to hide it so I wouldn't pass it on to the girls, but I did a terrible job. Luckily they're not afraid.