THE OTHER SIDE OF FEAR
Updated: Feb 12, 2019
We all have a fear of something. If someone asked me what my biggest fear is, I'd likely say flying in airplanes. Being suspended thousands of feet in the air with no control freaks me out. But if I allow fear to take over, I'd limit the possibility of achieving my dream to someday travel all over the world. Similarly, in life, if we allow fear to permeate our thoughts, we could be holding ourselves back from something amazing God has in store for us.
A few years ago, I struggled with deciding to change my college major. Going into the University of Miami, I strongly believed I would graduate with four years of pre-med courses and an acceptance to my dream medical school. However, after studying the sciences for a year, I realized I was going down the wrong career path. I saw so many of my pre-med peers eager to conduct scientific research and shadow doctors, which was far from anything I wanted. You're probably wondering why I'd even decide to study medicine if scientific research and shadowing didn't appeal to me. Well, one reason is because I knew my purpose was to heal people, so I just assumed the medical field was the most effective way to achieve this. However, deep down inside, I desired to work in the fashion industry. The fear of being "unsuccessful" or not having a career with as much academic "prestige" (according to some) is what was holding me back. So for a year, I continued studying the sciences and running experiments that quite honestly didn't peak my interest.
It took a gentle nudge from a few relatives for me to realize that my purpose was not what someone could teach me but rather what God had given me from the start: the gift of creativity and a love for fashion. Plus, I realized being able to heal people didn't have to be just physical. There are many who could use assistance with their spiritual health, which can be done in any industry. The encouraging words of my loved ones pushed me to switch my career path and strive for my dream of becoming a high profile fashion stylist and editor. Yes, I was scared. I knew going into fashion would be challenging because it is a dog-eat-dog industry. I knew I would be wasting a whole year of classes. I knew some people would judge me for switching from Biochemistry to Marketing. I knew I was taking a risk. But I also knew in my heart that I was making a decision that I would appreciate for the rest of my life.
When traveling on a plane, taking off is my least favorite part of the flight. However, once I'm in the air, I am able to relax and appreciate the beautiful views of God's creation. Similarly, stepping out on faith and making a big academic change was a lot like take-off. It was intimidating at first, but now I'm happily cruising in my element, and I'm confident I will land a fulfilling career in the fashion industry.
Whatever you may be facing, trust God's plan for your life. Put the fear in His hands, and He will give you faith in return. Talk to Him. Let Him help you make all decisions, whether big or small, and He will never let you fail. Reading and repeating God's Word regarding faith, fear, and/or decision-making is helpful during the process. Two great verses include Philippians 4:6-7, which says, "don't worry about anything, but in all your prayers ask God for what you need, always asking Him with a thankful heart" and Mark 9:23 where Jesus, whose wisdom always comes in clutch, says "everything is possible for the person who has faith." There is tremendous power in these words.
Looking back on my situation, I learned a few lessons:
1) Staying in a comfort zone often results in the loss of so much hidden potential. Venture out. Allowing my God-given gift to go to waste because of fear just wasn't right. Although I still work just as hard in my new major as I did in my previous one, I enjoy my classes so much more, and I know I'll find joy in my future career.
2) Be yourself...very cliché, but so so so true! When I allowed myself to work towards a career in a field that I love, I began striving for fashion opportunities because I was eager to do so...not simply to add more experience to my resume.
3) Life is short. Do what you love.
Check out the links below for additional verses to reference, and take a look at the pictures I've taken during some of my latest flights.