The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

VIEWPOINT – Fear not just negative, can be motivational

By Audrey Werth/tr news editor

Fear can be an overwhelming emotion. It tends to strike at crucial moments when important decisions must be made.

This makes it seem like a negative feeling that should be pushed away and diminished. Sometimes, though, it is important to lean into the fear.

Fear is powerful. It holds back many people in ways both small and large. But because fear has enough strength to inhibit or paralyze people, it can also be an incredibly strong motivator.

No one wants to feel anxious or fearful, but overcoming a fear can be well worth the effort because fears often represent strong desires.

Giving in to anxious thoughts is an awful place to be, but it is understandable because the pressure of fear is easier to give into than to resist.

In every situation, there is an opportunity to flip fear on its head and perceive it in a positive light.

Roman emperor and stoic philosopher Marcus Aurelius said, “The impediment to action advances action. What stands in the way becomes the way.”

The idea is not to wish away fear but instead to use it as an advantage by working hard to counter anxious thoughts.

Malala Yousafzai, the youngest ever Nobel Prize laureate, documented the fear felt by young girls trying to complete their education in northwest Pakistan, an area under Taliban rule. Even under dangerous circumstances, she chose to speak up passionately about a cause that she believed in.

In one of her diary entries on the BBC, Yousafzai said, “Today I did some household chores, my homework and played with my brother. But my heart was beating fast — as I have to go to school tomorrow.”

In 2012, a Taliban gunman opened fire on Yousafzai’s school bus. Several of her friends were wounded, and she was shot in the head.

Despite the fearful environment Yousafzai was in, she continued to live her life because she knew she and all other girls deserved to be educated. Giving into the fear would have been worse than using it to move forward.

Fear arises when faced with important decisions. These are the moments when it is critical to use this fear as a powerful motivator because the alternative is to allow it to detrimentally inhibit one’s actions.

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