I’ve always dreaded Mondays. And since choosing to associate dread with Monday, psychosomatic “defeated” feeling has become a frequent choice for Monday armor—a brittle option when encountering the week’s challenges.
The first character I thought of when I read this quote was Éowyn from J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings. In this scene from LOTR: The Two Towers, Aragorn asks Éowyn what she fears. Éowyn responds,
A cage, to stay behind bars until use and old age accept them, and all chance of valor has gone beyond recall or desire.
Two words in her response seized my attention, “cage” and “valor”, rather the idea of possessing great courage when facing [illusory] impenetrable fear. Anxiety and fear feel restrictive, chaining our efforts to fight it, causing us to believe we can’t. But we know that Aragorn was right in his belief, “I do not think that will be your fate.” Let us challenge ourselves to believe the same about ourselves.
This isn’t to suggest that all fear is bad or isn’t normal when facing the “what ifs” of a scenario. But it is an encouragement to explore the “what ifs” with this same level of bravery, reframing dread and defeat with fulfillment, as Mrs. Grotke shared. By happy coincidence, this was one of the first #MondayMotivation tweets I saw today and knew it had to be shared.
In the DailyOm course, “Taking Your Leap of Faith” by Barbara Schiffman and Camille Leon, Camille presents the challenge of fighting fear-based resistance, “I can’t…” phrases, with empowering statements of “I can…” or “I’m learning how to…”. It’s not a final (nor ultimate) solution for overcoming all self-defeating thoughts, but it’s a good place to begin. As you go through your week, The Collective invites you to share experiences of overcoming fear(s) and/or anxious moments in the comments below.