I watched my youngest fur baby approach a spider this evening without any fear – he just went right up to it, sticking his nose against the creepy, eight-legged insect and I, in turn, began pondering what it would be like if we all approached life like my Georgie? What if we all nose-dove into all of the things that plague us with angst and extreme hesitation? What if we simply weren’t aware of the crippling ideology of fear the same way my furry, four-legged feline is clearly unaware of it?
As I continued to watch George approach the pest with great, innocent curiosity and semi-playfulness, I thought of my own fears and what approaching them in a similar manner might feel like, might accomplish?
Unlike George, we learn fear. We are taught fear. Our experiences mold our fears, small and large. Take the spider for example – Yes, there are some existing spiders that can poison and potentially kill a human being but most are empirically harmless and yet, many of us continue to fear these things, gasping, screeching at the smallest one whilst fleeing for the nearest inanimate object to splatter its guts with. At what point was this behavior learned? Where was it learned? And why? How can I unlearn it?
All of the above questions and then some can be applied to the majority of our fears and starting today, I’m going to make a conscious effort to do so. I never know what I may learn about myself, about others, about life and about taking risks. Maybe that risk won’t seem so menacing once I’m able to honestly answer the why’s, when’s and how’s. Every time I find myself confronted with my fears and anxieties which, let’s face it, is pretty much on a daily basis, I’m going to remind myself of my little Georgie and his fearless frolic with the tiny, unwelcome spider that lost its life shortly after my observation and deep contemplation.