The Ponder Effect | What choices am I making out of fear?
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What choices am I making out of fear?

Of course, some fears are healthy, or at least some measure of fear is healthy. But so often, our fears become distorted and we let them prevent us from living more fully and authentically, whether we recognize it or not.

There are so many kinds of fear:


When we think through all aspects of our lives and honestly ask ourselves—What choices am I making out of fear?—do any possible answers arise? The question assumes that they will. Maybe not, but for most of us, probably so. What are those choices? What are those fears? Reflecting on this question in community has the power to enlighten and possibly even free us.

Share your thoughts [All posts are 100% anonymous]

8 Ponderings
  • Anonymous

    September 16, 2018 at 5:35 pm

    As a parent, one of the things that I have the hardest time letting go and giving to God is my fears for my children. I so want them to avoid my mistakes, and as they get older and leave for college or interact with other teenagers who might be making bad choices, I fear them having to experience the hard lessons of life. And that fear makes me choose kindness and support them more times than my husband would like. Being deliberate in how I respond to their current situation and not coming from my place of fear for them is one of the choices I am currently working on. I want to support them and also encourage them. Does anyone else struggle with this?

  • Anonymous

    September 16, 2018 at 9:29 pm

    I am awakened in the middle of the night by two fears, the fear of disappointment (disappointing others) and the fear of pain and loss. Two fears absolutely out of my control. In some ways, they motivate me toward positive things, like playing with my children or meeting an important deadline. The reality is, I regularly do these things without being motivated by fear. But I never really let myself off the hook. Questions like, did I do that well enough? Am I a good parent? Do my children really know how much I love them? It helps to remind myself that I am doing my best—to breathe and give myself the grace I would give another.

  • Anonymous

    September 18, 2018 at 6:16 am

    Reading the above prompts, I’m struck by the “afraid of intimacy.” I sometimes think I’m afraid to show vulnerable love and create intimacy with some, and easily do it with others- speaking of family and sometimes friends I’m very close to.

  • Varina Willse

    September 18, 2018 at 11:10 am

    I remember a particular time in the past five years when I realized with amazing and terrifying clarity that I needed to walk right into the thing I feared most. I had experienced unemployment before and I never ever wanted to be there again. And yet, the job I had found was not a good fit. I was not valued or appreciated for who I was. I was so scared to quit and face another period of unemployment, but all of a sudden I knew it was exactly what I needed to do. It wasn’t easy, but it was the right decision.

  • Varina Willse

    September 18, 2018 at 11:14 am

    Re: the question Does anyone else struggle with this? I do. I carry a lot of fear for my children, and it’s all tied up in the hope I carry for them. It’s a fine line between protecting them and keeping them safe on the one hand and letting them slowly gain independence and resilience on the other. Being deliberate in how we respond, as you are, is the key probably. Checking in with ourselves routinely and asking ourselves, what is triggering our reactions and rules and just doing our best. Of course we are afraid, though–parenting is terrifying!

  • Anonymous

    September 20, 2018 at 7:56 am

    Everything either stems from fear (like – anger, jealousy) or love (like – hope, joy, peace, trust.) The question I should ask myself is how many times a day to I make a choice based on love? Then maybe if I ask myself that, I will begin to reduce the powers of the fears I do have . We all need to remember that the only thing that is real is Love and to act on that – if we do that fear doesn’t stand a chance.

  • Anonymous

    September 20, 2018 at 11:22 am

    Last year, I heard the advice to try to tackle whatever causes you the most fear/anxiety first thing in the day. It’s been a good way for me to measure what I am avoiding and why. Faith helps me navigate my large fears (of failure, lack of success or living a meaningful life). I find that it’s the small fears that can keep me from living a whole and healthy life. Trying to tackle them first thing helps them not become a big burden. It also frees up my time and space for the things that matter.

  • Anonymous

    September 21, 2018 at 3:30 pm

    Basically every bad or unhealthy choice I make is based from fear! Typically fear that I am not enough.