I hate spiders. I blame my exposure to the movie “Arachnophobia” as a kid. I’d rather wrestle an anaconda than have to look at a spider.
This morning I went outside to write and there was a gargantuan spider (okay maybe the size of a penny) hanging out on his web. The problem was that he had his house all over my chair. I took a towel and hit him and his web down. I sat down and proceeded to write. You better believe I was looking around for that tarantula. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw him sneak up on me. He started to build his evil fort again. Do I kill it or hang out with it?
The easy thing to do would have been to kill it. It would end my immediate discomfort and fear. But then I thought, I’m just going to sit here and write. I kept the 8-legged freak in my periphery for a while. Then I just forgot about him. A few minutes later, I looked and he was still building his web, pretty close to me. My discomfort had diminished and I felt some sort of small victory over my fear of spiders. Fear told me to kill it. I beat fear by saying, nah, I’m just going to hang out with it. The longer I sat with it, the more confidence I gained.
Guess what, the spider didn’t bite me. The fear cycle was crumbling. Am I going to get a pet tarantula and cuddle with it? Um, no. But I dismembered the power that fear had over me. Whatever your fear (public speaking, launching your new idea, using a new strategy, etc.), hang out with it. Don’t avoid it. Don’t kill the spider.
Photo Credit: http://www.independent.co.uk