Replace Fear with Curiosity

DenaDecember 2, 2010

The only constant in life is change.

When it comes to change, we have two choices:

1. Resistance
2. Acceptance

Resistance to change is easier in the short-term. If you resist change, you can stay in your comfort zone where it is soft & warm.

Acceptance of change will reward you in the long-term. If you accept change, you will be challenged. You will be forced to adapt to new surroundings. You will evolve.

As human beings, we are creatures of habit. When we are comfortable we are not likely to shake things up. We accept mediocrity because mediocrity is easier to achieve than greatness. We accept jobs that drain us because a steady paycheck is easier than pursuing our passions. We accept negative relationships because security is easier than loneliness.

But what if we didn’t?

What if we stopped settling for good enough and started working toward amazing?

What if we stopped fearing change and started to embrace it?

Sounds great, but how do we get there?

Two months ago, I left my job after three years. It wasn’t an easy decision to make. I had grown incredibly comfortable there. I got nice raises every year. I got nice bonuses, too. I kept getting promoted. I had great relationships with my colleagues. The volunteers that I supported adored me. On paper, everything was beautiful. Any baby-boomer in his right mind would think me an imbecile for leaving such a sweet setup. But here’s the thing…

I wasn’t happy. I was settling because it was comfortable. And then, when the company made me an enormously generous counter-offer, it made it even harder to walk away; but I did.

I left because, despite the fact that I was afraid, I was also curious. I do not want to be a manager at an association for accountants. I want to be a speaker, a coach, a blogger. I want to inspire people and change lives. I want to travel the world & share my experiences. I want to help preserve the environment. I want to make the world a better place.

Lofty ambitions… I know, but it’s who I am! So I left. I walked out the door.

It wasn’t easy, but I did it. Alan Watts said that the attitude of faith is to let go & become open to truth, whatever it might turn out to be. And that is what I did, what I am.

By replacing fear of the unknown with curiosity we open ourselves up to an infinite stream of possibility. We can let fear rule our lives or we can become childlike with curiosity, pushing our boundaries, leaping out of our comfort zones, and accepting what life puts before us.

A friend of mine posted this image on Tumblr today and it’s been tugging away at my heartstrings since I laid eyes on it:

American Prospects, Homer, Alaska, Blind Man in garden
American Prospects, Homer, Alaska, Blind Man in garden

It is a blind man in his garden in Homer, Alaska in June, 1984. There is so much about this photograph that speaks to me. I was one month old when this photograph was taken. The garden is so stunning that it takes my breath away. I think to myself: Look at what this blind man created. Look at his humble pose even as he stands in the middle of a miracle.

Life is bursting with potential. Beauty is there, always, waiting for us to tear it open like a package and share it with the world. If we accept this, if we accept change, if we replace fear of the unknown with curiosity, and have the faith to let go—only then can we create the lives of our dreams.

It is time to let it happen.

Comments (14)

  • sadya sid

    December 2, 2010 at 8:07 pm

    RT @denabotbyl: New Post: Replace Fear with Curiosity

  • Sana

    December 4, 2010 at 6:38 am

    RT @denabotbyl Replace Fear with Curiosity

  • Natalie

    December 4, 2010 at 12:49 pm

    What a wonderful post Dena. I clicked on your comment on my friend Chris Guillebeau’s site and just loved your refreshing honesty in this post.

    Sounds like you’ve taken an amazing leap of faith and congrats to you on choosing the high road.

    Going after what makes you personally happy, fulfilled and free is the greatest leap of faith anyone can take.

    I look forward to watching your journey.


    1. Dena

      December 4, 2010 at 12:55 pm

      @ Natalie – Thank you so much for your kind words. I’ve just spent a minute looking at Womanz World and I love it. I am going to do some more exploration. Thank you for stopping by & let’s stay connected. 🙂

  • Dena Botbyl

    December 4, 2010 at 8:36 pm

    evolution you | Replace Fear with Curiosity

  • Ashley Cambers

    December 5, 2010 at 3:03 pm

    A little Sunday positivity. RT @denabotbyl Replace Fear with Curiosity

  • JR Moreau

    December 8, 2010 at 12:46 pm

    Great post Dena! I’m so glad you left your job and are doing what you’re curious and excited about now. I did that about 2 years ago and haven’t looked back since. You’re going to do great! Amazing things happen when you’re out of your comfort zone, yet still curious and excited about something!

  • James Ryan Moreau

    December 8, 2010 at 5:00 pm

    RT @denabotbyl: Replace Fear with Curiosity

  • Dena Botbyl

    December 8, 2010 at 7:11 pm

    RT @jrmoreau: RT @denabotbyl: Replace Fear with Curiosity

  • Raam Dev

    December 17, 2010 at 8:31 pm

    RT @denabotbyl: Replace Fear with Curiosity <– Beautifully written; stunning photo of a blind man in his garden.

  • Dena Botbyl

    December 18, 2010 at 3:43 pm

    RT @raamdev: RT @denabotbyl: Replace Fear with Curiosity <– Beautifully written; stunning photo of a blind man …

  • Charlie

    January 30, 2011 at 9:59 am

    I found your old blog site when searching Google for something about Fight Club. I read some old articles you have written and commented on one before I realized that you have a new site. I clicked your redirect link to this site and subscribed to the RSS after reading a couple of your very fascinating articles.
    This entire article has touched me deeply. I find the last two paragraphs have really made an impact. At first glance, I did not know the man in the picture was blind. That picture really does do a number on the heart. Thank you for sharing it.

    1. Dena

      February 1, 2011 at 1:30 pm

      @ Charlie – Thank you so much for your kind words! I am really glad that you enjoyed the post. I am so grateful that you decided to subscribe! I should have some new, inspiring work up soon. I’m going to check out your blog now. Have a great day! 🙂 –Dena

  • Things I Want to Teach My Child |

    December 1, 2021 at 5:21 pm

    […] the soul you must also learn to dominate the body. And in order to dominate the body you cannot fear pain. —Paulo […]

Leave a Comment

Prev Post

Happy Thanksgiving — Thank You!

Next Post

Gandhi's Top Ten Fundamentals for Changing the World