on fear

I love fear. And by that what I mean is that I love the feeling of getting over my fears. I don’t actually like the feeling of being terrified. If I wore any kind of heart rate monitor during my classes, you would be able to see visually when I’m hyping myself up to prepare to contribute to the class, and then the actual contribution – because that’s when you see my heart rate go off the charts. I hate it, but I’m also fairly sure that I’m less anxious about it now than I was 3 years ago when I first started university. And I don’t know what kind of a sadistic person came up with this concept, but there’s a particular brand of terror that comes with knowing that 15% of your mark hinges on the fact that you have to muster up the courage to talk in almost every class, all the while knowing that everyone else is fighting for the chance to speak as well. But I digress.

I think it’s healthy to be afraid of things, even if they’re things that you really want to do. Actually – especially if they’re things you really want to do. If you’re not scared then maybe you’re not pushing yourself far enough.

There should be a bit of fear associated with a lot of the things that you do because that’s how you conquer your goals and move onto bigger goals. Perhaps it’s just because I use fear as my motivation. Being too scared to take that step means that you’re just stuck where you are with nowhere to go but backwards. At least if you say “screw it” and go for the thing, you’ll have propelled yourself forward. And maybe you also crash land, but you tried and now you know. Here, listen to Joey and Chandler explain a variation of this to Rachel on Friends.

Right now I’m just terrified at the prospect of having to find my next (and last) co-op placement. And hilariously, it’s all pressure that I put on myself. My parents have this unwavering faith that I’ll find something great and that I’ll love, but I chalk that up to parents being parents. Meanwhile, I’m running through nightmare scenarios where I don’t get the job I want, or a job I like, or god forbid – I don’t get a job at all. This is partially due to the fact that I had a really great experience for my last two terms and now I feel like I need to top that. I told myself this term that I would get a headstart and apply to external jobs, which meant a lot of gazing at aspirational companies and being hesitant about my qualifications (read: not enough).

Job hunts are also a fun form of terror where you feel like you’re putting a bit of your soul out there with each application. I kept closing out of positions where I felt like I had no shot because I have such little experience but that was probably the least useful thing I could do in my situation. So I applied for the jobs anyways. The worst they could do is tell me ‘no’ and I can close that door and move onto the next one. Like some weird mystery advent calendar. This metaphor ran away from me – I’m sorry.

What I’m trying to say is that we’re all scared and we’re all clueless so you might as well take the leap and embrace the fear.


I remember the context for this strip being something more urgent than the seemingly never-ending stress of finding a job but I used it because I extremely identify with that last panel. 

2 thoughts on “on fear

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