By Steve Seinberg
I’ve been taking this self-help course for the last few weeks. It involves digging into your own self, doing certain exercises, and there’s also a reading list. It’s already been yielding benefits, too. Like, I’ve never in my life decided to voluntarily get up at 5am to do my fitness training and meditation before interacting with the outside world…but I’m doing it now!
The course also has a spiritual and existential component to it, and in the exercises and books, I’ve been bumping up against this one notion that really speaks to me…
It’s the idea that there’s really only one single choice that we have to keep making in life, and all of the choices we make that seem to be about other things…really aren’t.
And the choice is this:
You either choose Fear…or you choose Love.
Example 1: You’re having a disagreement with your significant other. You can choose fear, and assume there’s a chance you’ll get hurt in this, so you might as well lash out first in order to have some control over the situation and minimize the potential damage to yourself…or you can choose love, by risking vulnerability, and sharing what’s going on for you even though you know there’s a chance you might get trampled in the process.
Example 2: You want to record a song you’ve written and then share it with the world. The fear path leads to you preemptively deciding that people won’t like what you might create, and won’t care what you have to say…and so you either do a poor, half-hearted job on the track, turning it into a self-fulfilling prophecy, or worse yet, you quit with the recording idea before you even get started. The love path, though, leads to you recording that song to the best of your ability and then putting it out there because you felt joy in creating it, and because you honestly believe that it might touch something in some of the people who hear it.
Example 3: You feel trapped in a job that pays you decent money but that you don’t enjoy at all. Traveling down the fear path leads to you staying in the job because even though you can’t stand it, there’s a steady paycheck involved, and remaining there means you won’t have to face the possible hazards of the unknown. Walking the love path, however, means placing enough value on your own well-being, and having enough belief in your own abilities, that you’re willing to take a leap of faith and explore new possibilities.
It all comes down to the choice between fear and love.
Which one are you choosing right now…?