As a child, I was a bit OCD. I had to brush my teeth the same way each morning, I had to count the steps that I walked and I had to avoid the cracks in the sidewalk. I avoided those cracks because of the saying, “Step on the crack and you’ll break your mother’s back”. I remember walking to school with my head down and basically playing hop scotch with the sidewalk to avoid all the cracks. I don’t know how much I believed in the saying but I did not want to be the cause of something bad happening to my mother. I felt that if there was even the slightest chance that my misstep could cause my mother injury, I should step carefully.
Do I still avoid the cracks in the sidewalk? No, I do not avoid them literally but figuratively, I might. Dr. Wayne Dyer said that we make all decisions based on Love or Fear. The decisions based on love make us excited and fill us with expectant joy. The decisions based on fear are trying to “protect” us from possible failure, disappointment, or negative judgement. Dr. Dyer said that FEAR really stands for False Evidence Appearing Real. That is how I walked to school. I thought that I might have the power to inflict injury to my mother by stepping incorrectly so I felt compelled to keep up the hop scotching steps. Looking back, I think of all the beautiful sunrises that I missed by failing to look up on those walks to school. I remind myself of this every time I feel myself start to make a fear based decision. By not making the choice I really want to make, what am I missing? If you are staying in a job that doesn’t bring you fulfillment because you are afraid of being called a quitter, if you are staying in a relationship that doesn’t fill your heart because you are afraid of being alone, or if you won’t give your opinion because you are afraid of how people will react, then you are still avoiding the cracks in the sidewalk. I work on this daily. I really try to stop and ask myself what my motivation is for choosing the choices I make. If I realize my choice is made from fear, I remind myself of all the sunrises I might be missing out on and I try to choose differently. When people at the end of their life were asked about their regrets, they said that they regretted the choices they didn’t make or the opportunities that they were too afraid to pursue. We have one shot at this life and since we are spiritual beings having a human experience, we should be out there having the experiences of our life.
So, I say stop worrying about the cracks and start loving your life.