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What is Fear?

As seen in the digital magazine, APeeling in November 2020

Writers use emotion to motivate characters and move them through their story. The two strongest motivators for human behaviour are fear and love. Both are on either side of a weight scale and still interact to fuel each other

An author can use the fear of losing a love or a child to motivate a character into action. She can use the fear of never finding love to create conflict and depth in a character. Fear of being hurt by someone we love to keep a character stuck and distanced from their target; love. Fear of being loved so much that the character can’t reciprocate, can inspire self awareness or introspection.

We fear that which we do not control. Think about it.

Fear of loss - We can’t control if something is lost or someone is lost.

Fear of object - The object is in control of our response and our safety

Fear of future - No one controls time, the future, the past or right now.

Fear of the unknown - You can’t control what you don’t know

Fear of people - Can’t control the actions of others

Fear of public speaking - Your inability to control what they will say or think when they pay attention to you

So, if we want to live a fearless life - We need to lose control. We need to let it go, accept it, and trust that things will be as they will be. We need to see things for what they really are and not what they might be.

Due to global communication our world is micro and we fear things that are not a threat. We create threats. We are our own worst enemy because we have irrational fears, anxiety and panic attacks. We start hiding from the world, shutting off from those around us becoming isolated.

All one needs do is watch the news to know we are in a state of fear. Covid, protests, violence, division, and personal attacks.

It can be a scary place if we focus only on what we cannot control. By focusing on what we can and acting accordingly, we can go out and succeed.

I live in fear every day, but I do not let it stop me from trying to succeed. Yes, I am scared, but I’m still here trying!

I asked my LinkedIn followers to define fear and this is what they said:

Jessica Coulthard

I like to reframe it to EXCITEMENT about the unknown

Will Mackey

Fear is not being able to have control of the unknown, whether it be real or imaginary.

Ken Baldo

Fear is the opposite of love. Most fears are False Evidence Appearing Real.

Tammy Boljuncic

Fear immobilizes us, paralyzes physically and mentally highjacking our ability to act in any rational manner.

Fear takes the life out of our lives and has us repressing, oppressing and suppressing until we regret not doing something to save ourselves from shame and guilt. It holds us hostage , not for ransom, but in exchange for our soul and purpose on this earth. It kills us slowly while stealing our self worth, so that we having nothing left but tears.

Shannon Peel publishes the digital magazine APeeling. For more information go to

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