As always, it’s good to hear from the men on the topic at hand. On any topic, it’s good to go to the collective wisdom or goofiness of the men and see what is to be shared and revealed. This month we hear from the men posting on social media, in answer to this question: “What is your biggest fear and how do you deal with it at this time?”
Ben Estes – I try and remember that both of my parents served in the military in WWII. Both saw combat and death. Both faced the real possibility of sudden violent death for extended periods. Both embraced and surrendered to their duty, serving a purpose greater than their own lives. When I remember that, I’m honored to do my duty, whatever it may ultimately be. I’m grateful for the opportunity to serve.
Adam D. Rosado – You are always leading. What kind of leader do you want to be, and what’s your purpose, all while remembering that to be a leader means to be in service of those you are responsible of leading? As far as fear is concerned, it needs to be transformed into action as opposed to being a means of paralysis. In that sense, fear can be a driving force. Focus on the actions, not the fear. In addition, it’s the responsibility of leaders to create new leaders by way of their example, so that there isn’t a dependency on just one leader. Empowering others is crucial to this as it gives them the space to step into leadership, while you are there so that they can thrive when you are gone.
Sandy Feder – Through my adult life, I’ve had two ways to handle fear – one that predominated for more than 30 years and is still relevant, and at present a second even higher level answer.
The first is grounded in “est,” the Landmark Forum, and T. Harv Eker‘s Enlighted Warrior Training Camp. The core question is: Do I have fear or does it have me? If the fear conversation/reflex is running in my internal monologue automatically and undistinguished, then it has me. But, as soon as I can consciously *notice* it, then I can step back from it, disengage from it, and choose to replace it with language and emotions that are empowering instead of disempowering.
Phase Two, now in my 50s, is “EMUNA and BITACHON.” These are the Hebrew words for faith and trust in HaShem. Now I know fully that Hashem causes and orchestrates everything, that it’s all for the best, and that every trial and tribulation (i.e. those things that would ordinarily cause “fear”) are mere exercises on the growth path, delivered by a benevolent Father who loves me and only wants the best for me. EMUNA and BITACHON! These days, I get afraid (as normal), but I never *stay* afraid. With faith and trust in HaShem, it’s easy to zap the fear-monologue like a fat juicy moth hitting a bug light! Baruch HaShem!
Annonymous – Currently, my fear is showing up as anxiety and some difficulty breathing. If I get in front of it before it needs medicine, it is because I engage in exercise (walking, pushups, sit-ups, back exercises) enough to get me breathing more and harder. If I let it stew too long, I may take a Xanax which relaxes me when I can’t relax myself. Useful these days (and while I was in the throes of dealing with my sister’s cancer and death) is recalling what I took away from a couple of Jim Newman’s YouTube videos regarding non-duality. Here I learned there never was or never will be any other time than right now. And, my wishing that ANYTHING would be any way other than the way it is will cause or prolong my suffering, creating fear.
Tom McCarter – OCB is hosting QuaranTeam meetings three times a week on Zoom for all men, led by division men. Men do not need to be MDI members, and this is not designed as an enrollment tool. Men are asked the tough questions about how they are handling the current crisis and are able to ask for the collective wisdom of the men to conquer challenges they are facing.