What will they think of me? What will they do to me? What if I say something that offends someone?
What if? What if? What if?
I am a fairly bold guy, but that wasn't always the case. I used to blend in with the wallpaper, trying to not draw attention to myself.If they see me, it will be bad
, I thought. I was a chameleon, without my own opinions or objections and without my own voice. I would say whatever I thought people wanted to hear.
If life's a stage, I hid behind my curtain of fear and only popped out when I was sure nobody would hook me around the neck and yank me back behind the curtain.
After all the taunting and abuse I suffered as a kid, my final solution was just to shut up.
Perhaps you find yourself like most of us, allowing fear of what others think of you to have more influence over your life than what you would like.
The young woman says, "I'd better sleep with him, or he won't love me anymore."
The father, stressed out over finances, obediently sends out an inflated invoice out of fear that his boss would fire him otherwise.
A single mom gives in to her teenage son. Why does she cave? Because she cowers in fear whenever he launches into a rage over not getting his way.
There are myriad young,
unwed mothers; morally compromised men; frustrated moms and delinquent teens destroyed by the fear of man.
Decision-making is a process. And fear of man can influence every aspect of that process. This is huge. It's perhaps one of the greatest hindrances to our personal growth and professional advancement. How many times have you thought about or wanted to do something right and good---and trepidation about what others would say or think stopped you in your tracks?