“But here’s the dirty little secret: Fear is good. It keeps you from becoming a crappy doctor. Trick is you just can’t let it paralyze you.” -Dr. Cox, Scrubs
I’ve been thinking about fear a lot lately. I think fear is one of the biggest reasons why people don’t let themselves do great things, and it’s really not necessary. That said, I should clarify. Not all fear is bad.
There are two kinds of fear: the fear that makes you cower, and the fear that drives you to excel. Battle the first like the plague it is, but embrace the second. It will drive you to great places.
I am afraid of spending my life in a job I hate, so I put forth a great deal of effort trying to build a career I love. I’m afraid of working for many years and not having anything to show for it, so I spend my time investing, building assets, and creating work I can be proud of. These fears (and others) compel me, but because I don’t turn away, they are not bad. They compel me forward.
I once read a novel that said the difference between animals and humans is that animals flee when there is danger, while humans seek out the root cause and destroy it, protecting the entire species henceforth. Even if you’re afraid, charge forward. Don’t cower like a beast. Fight like a human.