We learn that at an early age. You learn that the first time you think there is a monster in your closet.  People get hurt all the time because we aren’t as invincible as we would like to think. People can hurt other people. They can rip out someone’s heart and walk awaywithout a glance back. Life can be hard and can really get you down. It’s rarely perfect and it has an amazing talent for showing us that regularly.

But even though all of this is true, there are still people out there who are living their lives fearlessly. They acknowledge that life is scary and people get hurt all the time but instead of trying to avoid hurting they embrace the possibility that they could crash at any moment. They are doing the things that they get call crazy for even considering. They are taking the risks that get them labeled the fearless one. But the thing fearless doesn’t always mean a lack of fear. Instead, they recognize their fear.

Think about it. What are you actually afraid of in life? Not that tiny spider you saw in the bathroom, you’re afraid of what the spider has potential to do to you mainly meaning you are afraid it will crawl in your general direction. You’re not afraid of heights, you are afraid of falling off a really tall building.

Just like you’re not afraid it falling apart, you’re afraid of falling in love.

Our current hookup culture has made it incredibly easy to never have serious connection with anyone. So that’s what we do. We walk around without connecting on purpose. Which means you never have to face the possibility of them actually being labeled “boyfriend.” You’re afraid if you connect you’ll have something to lose. Right now you’re free. You’re 20 with no one is around to hold you down except yourself. Which means no one can hurt you but yourself right? We are afraid that once we let someone in they will have power over us and our happiness. And yeah maybe they will and maybe it will end horribly but maybe it won’t. But if you never try you will never know.

You’re not afraid of the future, you’re afraid of repeating your past.

Ok so maybe history has the tendency to repeat itself from time to time. Maybe you have a tendency to find yourself in the same situations over and over again with similar people and end in similar ways. But you have to remember that everyday is a new day. The only thing you have ahead of you is the future and you have the power to make that into whatever you see fit. Don’t allow the fear of the past stop you from working towards the future you want. You control your future. You hold the pen which means you get to finish the story, not the past you.

You’re not afraid of hurting him, you’re afraid of being alone.

You are so worried that he is as good as it’s going to get. That no one else will want you and that you will end up alone if you blow it with him. You’re worried that you will end up the crazy cat lady or the forty year old that is still bar hopping on a Tuesday night. But you have to realize that being alone isn’t a bad thing even though our social constructs might tell us it is sometimes. Being alone allows for you to really figure out who you are and yeah that in itself is scary but what if you never figure out who you really are because you never give yourself the chance to be on your own. To be without the influence of anyone else. Without any of the ties that can limit your life.

My biggest advice can be boiled down to these three point: Stop being afraid. Learn to live your life. Try to be fearless. Your twenties are a time for a lot of things. They are a time for you to figure out life, love, and who you really want to be to this world. It’s not however a time for you to sit back and avoid doing big things with your life because you are too scared of what might happen to be fearless.

Originally written by Allie Braun on Unwritten

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