Fear at its core is the anticipation of pain, be it emotional or physical. Many times fear is triggered by painful memories and although at times fear can propel us forward, many times it actually creates separateness and isolation. It contracts our view of ourselves and our life.
The nature of fear is to keep the experience of connectedness and love at bay. Ironically people who live in fear are craving for that very sense of connecton and love. Fear builds an armor to protect, shield and isolate.
In Radical Acceptance Tara Brach writes, that when we are feeling fearful, “we need to be reminded that we are a part of something larger than our own frightened self” Instead of being trapped by our experience of fear we can widen our perception of our lives by widening our awareness and creating space for the fear. One way to widen this experience is to step away from our thoughts and connect with the feelings in our body. This is the practice of leaning into fear. By leaning into this fear we are actually opening ourselves to an awareness which chips away the armor and allows space for connection and love.