Yesterday, I watched Oprah’s Lifeclass with Tony Robbins where they discussed living fearlessly . There is no such thing as completely living without fear. Tony admitted that fear is a protection mechanism and it keeps us alive by warning us when something threatens us. The problem is that we can develop irrational fear and we use fear to prevent us from living. One of the important points made was that you don’t have to fix yourself. Fear is natural. You are not broken, you just have to learn how to use your fear and turn it into power. The show talked about “the story.” The “story’ we tell ourselves is how we rationalize our excuses in life and our reasons for not doing the things that scare us. Everyone is different. Some people experience fear and they create a story that empowers them to to face the challenge. Other people experience fear and create a story that provides an excuse that allows us to be disempowered. Some people walk through the fire while others are scared off by the fire.
Why would you tell yourself a story that keeps you stuck? It serves a purpose. It affirms to you why you can’t do something. If you believe that you can change the situation and you choose not to, then you have to live with it. But, if you can create a story as to why you can’t do it, it’s easier to live with because you can believe it is not in your control. You create your story and then your story creates your reality. Stories become deeply ingrained in our psyche because we tell them to ourselves over and over again across many years. Tony shared a quote to illustrate how we convince ourselves of our stories: “If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed.” -Adolph Hitler
On the show, Tony showed that many of our beliefs begin in childhood. Our view of the world can be locked in trying to gain the attention of the parent that wouldn’t give us presence. We continue to use those same tactics as we move through the world. I learned something about myself during this portion of the show. I have always sought male attention. What I learned as a child was that the easiest way to get male attention was to be involved in what they liked to do. I have an older brother so it wasn’t hard to learn what males like to do and to incorporate myself in it. As I grew older, the male aspect of what I like to do slowly overshadowed the female aspect of myself. I slowly abandoned what I like to do or I only did it when I was by myself. As I got into relationships, guys thought I was great. I could do everything they did and I didn’t force them to do all that “girly crap” that other girls expected. But, after time, I became resentful.
The truth is that I liked the “girly crap” and I was mad that I abandoned that part of myself for them. I wanted the guy to see how much I was giving up to be everything he needed and the poor sap had never really asked me to do. Can you say, doomed to fail? It doesn’t mean that I don’t enjoy some of the things that they do, but not to the same degree and not all the time. There was no give and take because they never knew that it was necessary to give into the things that I wanted to do. The story that I told myself was that I couldn’t be the feminine woman and be loved. I had to give up what I like in order to be accepted and loved. The truth is that if I am not the real me in the relationship, then someone is falling in love with my representative. That is not fair to the other person in the relationship. It was my fear of not being loved that stopped me from showing up as my true self. I haven’t erased the fear. I just have more faith that I have to be myself or I won’t ever have the type of relationship and intimacy I long for. This has been my lesson. I am learning that what I think and feel is just as important as what the other person wants. I don’t need to send in my representative any longer. I need to show up as myself every day.
I’ve learned that the story can be wreaking havoc in your life and you don’t even realize it. What stories are you telling yourself about what is going on in your life? What fear are you allowing to run the show? How can you change those stories to empower you?