Don’t let fear cripple you.

What is fear?

According to psychological research, fear is a primal emotion that triggers a universal biochemical response. 

Fear serves as an alert to the presence of danger or the threat of harm, whether that danger is physical or psychological.

Fear is a form of self-preservation that stops us from stepping out of our comfort zone into what our brain perceives as a potentially dangerous situation. 

The brain is an amazing machine. Our brain knows when we are in danger and will cripple the body in an attempt to protect itself.

However, when this happens and we are paralysed by fear, it prevents us from taking responsibility or action which in turn prevents us from facing the problem or danger and hence not emerging victorious.

That is why is it imperative that we learn to control this response.

Fear is the number one thing that keeps people from doing what is necessary.

The two types of Fear.

There are two types of fear: The first is what I call “Face-Value” fear. This is like a fear of heights or spiders. 

These fears are normally easier to overcome. These fears can be overcome by doing them and facing them head-on. 

I have a “healthy respect” for heights. So last year I was given the opportunity to go bungy jumping. 

I went to the Bloukrans Bridge Bungy which is one of the world’s highest commercial bungy jumping sites at 216 metres above the Bloukrans River in the Western Cape in South Africa.

I was shit scared of this stunt. 

One of the highest bridge bungy jumping sites in the world and it was my first one. So it was not like I was gradually facing my fear I went for the biggest one right off the bat. 

It was a phenomenal experience—one of the coolest things I have done in my life. The feeling of weightlessness and acceptance was overwhelming and eventually when the adrenaline had worked out (and I had come back to earth) I wanted to do it again.

“Everything you want is on the other side of fear.”

I had ample opportunity to walk away, to give in to fear, but I would not have forgiven myself if I did because I was on this journey to overcome my fears and learn how to face them. 

If I had walked away then Fear would have won.

When I was little I had bad anxiety issues. I had a bad stutter and I was crippled by fear. 

At some point in my youth, I had enough, I decided that fear would no longer rule my life. So I started putting myself in the situations that I was afraid of. 

I attacked my fear head-on. 

That is what needs to be done when facing our fears. The longer we wait to face the problem the bigger and scarier it gets. Then we start to hesitate, overthinking kicks in and the fear grows and we end up running away from it. 

There is this great quote about fear and overthinking in the book The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse by Charlie Mackesy that goes:

“I can’t see a way through,” said the boy. “Can you see your next step?” “Yes.” said the boy. “Just take that,” said the horse.

Only by accepting our emotions, analysing them and then taking the next best step can we work through and overcome.

The second is internal fears, like the fear of rejection or the fear of being judged or hated etc. These fears have to be trained out of us. We have to change our mindset regarding our internal fears.

"We suffer more in imagination than in reality"

These were, for me at least, more difficult to overcome because I had to change the way perceived my fears by not making them bigger than they were.

The ancient stoics believed that fear isn’t the enemy, these emotions are a natural response, the true enemy is our reaction to this emotion allowing it to paralyse us.

The greatest men in history did the right thing and displayed courage despite their fear. They didn’t let their fear get the better of them, that is because they accepted their emotions, examined them closely and never let themselves be ruled by them.

The Stoics also believed that doing the right thing regardless of the consequences is the hallmark of true masculinity. 

I was in a situation in high school where I had a choice to do the right thing or not. If I left it then nothing might have happened and life goes on. However, I chose the road less traveled and did the right thing and most of the school hated me for it. 

I stood alone in front of them in defiance. I was not going to apologise for my actions nor compromise my values and principles.

I did the right thing no matter what it cost me. I lost friends because of it. 

The point is that through all of it, I was scared and I was 14 years old. 

Age does not determine courage or wisdom, strong personal convictions do.

“Courage is not the absence of fear, courage is doing the right thing even when you are afraid”

What does the Bible say about fear?

The most repeated command in the Bible is “Fear not”. It is repeated 365 times throughout the Bible one for each day of the year.

Many verses in the Bible encourage us and comfort us through our fears and anxieties.

Knowing that God is by our side while we face our trials makes them conquerable and through this, we are reminded that God had good plans for our lives.

Many of the men that God used in the Bible were afraid. 

Moses and Joshua, the 12 apostles and all of us today get scared sometimes and that is okay. 

What is not okay though is cowering away from the challenge because of fear. Because behind the giant, waits the promised land.

This doesn’t mean I don’t feel scared, overwhelmed or anxious. I certainly do. However, I have learned how to take control of my feelings and not let them control me. 

The only thing that gets me through the dark valley is remembering God’s promises and finding comfort in them and trusting that He will come through.


Gentlemen, do not let fear become your master, it will ruin your life and prevent you from living the life of a champion of an overcomer.

Stare back at your fear and do not let it win. I believe in each man reading this, that you sir can and will overcome this beast called Fear. 

However, it is a decision that YOU have to make, no one can do it for you. This dragon you have to slay alone. 

But then again you aren’t really alone, are you?

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