Belenen (belenen) wrote,
Belenen
belenen

my most annoying personality obfuscation: fear of the physical world

This week's LJ idol topic: "My Most Annoying Personality Trait"

I don't believe people have negative personality traits, because that implies that the negative quality is inherent. I think people are beautiful at core, though they may pick up negative traits in the same way that a the most beautiful cloth would pick up dirt and debris if you were to drag it along the ground. And I don't believe it is possible to stain the human spirit -- some things are harder to wash out than others, but nothing is impossible to remove because it does not become part of us -- the negative cannot reach our core.

So I decided to give the topic a slight change: "My Most Annoying Personality Obfuscation" (to obfuscate is to make so unclear/opaque as to be difficult to perceive/understand).

And here it is: I yield to fear and let it control me. Not emotionally, no -- I think I am one of most emotionally brave people I've ever known -- but physically. I'm afraid of any physical risk, no matter how illogical or minute. Just walking alone halfway across the neighborhood to get my mail is a major accomplishment for me because in some alternate universe I could get mugged or kidnapped (I live in a very safe area). I sometimes go into the side yard to take photos of my jewelry, but if anyone comes by I get nervous and uncomfortable and scurry back inside like a mouse. As far as driving, once I push myself out of the flat I can comfortably drive anywhere that I am familiar with, but I am afraid to drive further than 30 minutes from my flat and I can't go anywhere that would require a map because I am afraid of getting lost. If I'm with someone else I don't have this problem, but I have no friends nearby so it's a big part of my life, and it's infuriating.

I'm not sure how this fear came back into my life -- a few years ago I spent nearly a year literally housebound from fear (when I was working through childhood sexual abuse in counseling) but as I progressed I lost that fear, and then this year it crept up on me again. Perhaps it feeds on depression, because this has been a supremely bad year; whatever the case, I am determined to overcome it. Last year I almost lost several of my friends because of canceling on them several times thanks to this senseless phobia -- it will not cause me or my friends such pain again. And I can only imagine the number of opportunities that I have lost because I have not gone out to discover them.

This year is the year of physical risk-taking for me. I've started off small, with a goal of going out at least three times a week to Curves -- barely a mile from my flat. But it is a step that will make other steps easier, because with increased strength I have more confidence, and when I feel strong enough I plan to take a self-defense class. And in April I hope to be strong enough to join in a nocturnal treetop excursion -- nighttime and trees are two of my greatest passions. I will not miss this opportunity! I do hope that I will have a friend to go with me but I am determined to go even if I go alone. And in the meantime I will challenge myself with meeting new people and going new places alone.

Next year I hope to look back and say "Wow, I can't believe I was ever that fearful. I'm so glad to be free!"

LJ idol topic 12: "My Most Annoying Personality Trait Obfuscation" ((if you liked/got something from this, please vote for me))
Tags: fear / insecurity, growth, true self, turning points, writing prompts
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