I used to be really good at running from fear. From picking up and moving, starting a new job, heck (true story), I even changed my name at one point and went by my middle name!
My going to Australia, while one of the best decisions of my life, was brought on by fear of failing in my Masters of Social Work. I didn’t believe I “deserved” to be there. That I somehow was a fraud. I truly believed in my heart that I couldn’t succeed. So, when the opportunity came up to travel, I didn’t think twice…. Even with a full year of tuition already paid for!
The problem is, if you run from your fears they will follow you. You will never get stronger, tougher or grow. And you give yourself a false illusion that you have control over the future. By running you prove yourself right, you couldn’t do it.
I didn’t learn this until I had literally no choice but to face my fears. I left a position as an Equine Assisted Therapy coach in a Neuroplasticity program on really bad terms. My mental health was declining, due to the work environment, and I just could not watch what was going on anymore. When I resigned my boss turned on us and we were kicked out of the house we lived in, illegally might I add, and had nowhere to go (We lived on property). I will leave it at that because I truly want to leave that experience in the past.
After I left I was audited by Canada Revenue Agency and was found to have been an employee, NOT a sub contractor. This meant that I owed back taxes on TWO YEARS of employment, and every penny of it since none of my claims against taxes were now applicable.
To keep a very long story short this led to two years of my old boss battling the decision with CRA, and dragging me along for the ride. I DID think about how I could run from this problem. “What if CRA changes their mind, I face penalties for this…. And more back payments…”. But the greatest gift that woman ever gave me was putting me through this experience because man did I grow.
I had no choice but to stand tall, tell my story and face each fear, each audit, each question head on. I had no choice but to be strong. And, in the beginning I wasn’t. It nearly broke me. But with each appeal, and with the letter that came stating she was taking me and the government to the Tax Court of Canada, I grew stronger. And I realized I WOULD SURVIVE by facing this head on.
A couple days before we were due in tax court I was lying in bed and pulled my journal out from my night stand. Nervous, but happy to get this over with after 2 years of appeals, I wrote “Good always wins. The Truth is always revealed”. I tucked my journal back into my night stand and went to sleep. The next day I received notice that she withdrew and the nightmare was over.
I grew SO MUCH from the experience and I realized that if you run straight at your fears they get the hell out of your way. By facing down your fears you grow as a person. You get stronger. You gain more confidence in you and your capabilities (Which, are endless by the way).
By facing your fears they seem so silly and insignificant. You will one day ask “How did I ever wonder how I would get through that?”. You will amaze yourself at how much you will grow.
Fears and obstacles are to be taken head on. Stop running. It doesn’t fix anything.
Have an amazing, blessed, Friday friends.