The undeniable thing about any fear is that it is present on the flip side of the very thing you value the most.
The very things that we desperately want, somehow keep us crippled and stuck, unable to move towards any kind of fruitful outcome.
Like wanting to be a successful entrepreneur, yet crippled by the thought of going solo. Wanting equality in connection, but escaping to the lopsided dynamics of toxic relationships. Like dreaming of showing your art, but feeling the burden of not being good enough. Want to hold your vulnerabilities lightly, but fearing them being seen.
Eight Of Swords reminds us of the more useful way to deal with fear — to engage with it.
When we refuse to see fear, it turns into a surly enemy that blocks the path. But when we articulate it, allow ourselves to feel it, witness what it does to us, share it with another, it loses the hold on us.
Culturally too, we are taught never to show fear. Or let fear show.
We demonise it, and are shown time and time again to avoid it at all costs. So we never learn to engage with it. But fear makes us feel boxed in when we repeatedly avoid that which we fear, or fear itself. It keeps us stuck when this avoidance is so habitual that we unconsciously slip into loops of escape. And we wonder why life isn’t moving on and why certain patterns keep repeating — such as difficulty with success, recurring relationship problems, health troubles.
Perhaps a more useful response to fear is to acknowledge that it’s okay for fear to be there, first. Not to rush to eliminate or get rid of it. To allow it, invite it in. Give it a seat at the table, even.
The next time you feel deep fear, ask yourself, how is it impacting the choice you are about to make? And is that choice going to take you closer to what you value? Or will it keep you stuck?
When you engage with your fear, you give true change a chance, by acknowledging how it is closely linked to what you value. To acknowledge the fear-fuelled urge to give up, turn back, flee, and to invite it in anyway, is actually the precursor to taking mindful, deliberate action. To move towards change, not without fear, but in spite of it.
I feel like this week, the message is so deeply for me.
I continue to take enquiries for personal reading sessions. This is most easily done online, either on a video call if you prefer and are comfortable, or a regular voice call too. So if you have been considering — whether you’re in Bangalore or not — please reach out.