What is a human’s most primitive and strongest emotion? Is it the power of love? Or maybe it’s happiness? I believe the answer to that question is something else entirely. I believe mankind’s most basic and primary emotion in most situations is fear. A fear that drives us to do many things, believe many things and act in many different types of ways. Yet, the only thing to fear is fear itself.
Let’s go back to the days when humans were just about to learn how putting a seed in the ground could help them survive. Back then, it was fear that was a person’s greatest tool for survival. Paranoia, thinking that every shadow in the night was a predator looking for a snack. One had to be aware at all times or pay the consequences. However, fear goes even deeper than just that. Humans have been and always will be complicated creatures. In our fear, we realized just how scary it is to be alone. Facing problems by yourself is terrifying and early humans knew that too. Now, fear isn’t just the world around you, humans learned how to be afraid of their loneliness.
“We are afraid to care too much, for fear that the other person does not care at all.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
Even deeper than that though is when humans developed fears about their own emotions. They realized that they could say or do things that would drive others away from them. Due to their fear of loneliness, they began to become scared of saying something that might create that loneliness. Where does it even end anymore? The number of fears is only increasing in today’s society. Fear of death, fear of heights, fear of many small holes, fear of closed spaces, fear of spiders, and maybe a fear of dogs. Humanity is as a society is created off fear and survives on fear.
Humanities fear is so ingrained into who we are as people, that often times these days we might not see it for what it is. If you really get to the root of an argument or a problem, it almost always traces back to a type of fear. Why did you argue about finances with your significant other? I was scared they wouldn’t be happy with what they heard, I was scared about my circumstances, I was scared we wouldn’t find a solution, I was scared of facing the truth, I was scared, I was scared, and did I mention I was scared? Probably not, we have all gotten so good at being afraid that we have begun to fuse fears together in a tangled knot. Any hope of finding the source means tracing back and unraveling several problems we might be (ironically) scared to face.
“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” – Nelson Mandela
These fears permeate all the way into big political issues into small domestic disputes. In case it isn’t clear by now, fear is everywhere in many shapes and sizes. When humans are scared they do a number of negative things. Like, lash out at the things they don’t understand or refuse to acknowledge the problem like it doesn’t exist. It’s a variation of our survival instinct of fight or flight. When we see a perceived danger we either fight it or run from it. Can we really let such emotions keep us from achieving the things we need to though?
We have things we need to do and can we really keep our fears from accomplishing them? Overcoming fears aren’t impossible. People have done it all the times in a number of different ways. From soldiers facing the fear of death to someone trying to conquer their fears through exposure to them. I think that the first major step most of them took though was that they recognized what the problem was and then faced it head-on. These things take courage and it’s never easy and sometimes we need the help of others to face them. Take that first step though, no matter how hard it is.
When you find yourself about to lash out or act a certain way, take a step back and think about what emotion is causing that. Don’t think about complicated reasons like I’m thinking this because of this and that. Get down to the basics, the purest and easy to understand roots. It’s ok to feel afraid, its ok to feel sad, its ok to have emotions. Recognize them for what they are and face them. You can practice this with day to day actions too. Think:
- I really want to eat that glazed donut.
- It’s a delicious donut, of course, oh and I’m planning to exercise and I haven’t eaten a sweet in a week and, and, and…
- The things listed above are a trap, they are excuses, not the base emotion.
- Try again: Why?
- Well, I’m hungry and eating it makes me happy.
- Why are you hungry? I haven’t eaten this morning. Why would it make me happy? I love donuts.
- Ok, now you know why you want to eat said donut on a basic level. Next:
- Why aren’t you just going to eat it right now then? I’m on a diet.
- Why are you on a diet? Because I want to lose weight because of a bunch of reasons.
- Ok, does the goal of losing weight make you happy or does it make other people happy?
- If you say you are losing weight for yourself then good, don’t change your image for others sakes. Saying making them happy makes you happy isn’t really a good reason either.
- So you are dieting for a goal you wanted to set for yourself. Then, is that donut worth more than your goal?
- No? Then you can just wait a bit on that glazed donut now, can’t you?
That is a little bit silly of a reason but the process is the same. Think about your actions and why you do them. Think about the things you like and why you like them. Get down to the basic foundation of your thoughts, your pure emotions. It’s those emotions that really drive humans to do the things that we do and make us who we are. So don’t let fear control your life anymore. When the only thing to fear is fear itself, it’s not so scary after all.
Thank you all for reading another post from your’s truly. It’s always a nice feeling to put thoughts to paper. I recommend trying it at least once and see what you think. Anyways:
Have a splendiferous day.