We have nothing to fear ...but fear itself

I follow Allison Miller's blog on her Facebook page. She is documenting her touring adventures with Brandi Carlile. One of her more recent blogs included a statement that struck a chord with me:

"Behind anxiety and judgment lies FEAR."

I'd love to hear your responses/reactions to that statement.

In my work with children I've noticed that fear plays quite a role in how a child responds/reacts in any given situation. Some children are raised to be fearful of adults, fearful of strangers, fearful of the world outside their homes/communities. Other children don't understand the world around them due to learning difficulties or other challenges and, consequently, become fearful. Still others are fearful because their basic needs aren't being recognized or getting met. And, there are also the few children who are completely fearless.

I have observed that most fearful children often exhibit the most challenging behaviors. As a result of these behaviors they are scolded, isolated and often not accepted by others. These children are reprimanded for behaviors without fully understanding the reasons why the behaviors are happening in the first place.

What would happen if it was recognized that child is acting out of FEAR?

It brings to mind Maslow's hierarchy of needs:

Having basic needs (food, water, shelter) and feeling safe are the foundations of optimal learning and connectedness. I would venture to say that many people fail to realize the importance of basic needs and safety needs when working with children - particularly those who are at-risk (economically, academically, socially, and emotionally). In my line of work I see so many fearful children (and adults, for that matter). Recognizing their fear and then helping them to feel safe and secure is the ONLY WAY that I am able to meet their psychological needs and prepare them for peak learning experiences.

On the flip side I have worked with kids who are FEARLESS. They are the risk-takers...the ones who climb the tallest trees and explore the darkest corners of the forest. What makes them so unafraid? Is being FEARLESS always a good thing?

Is a certain dose of fear good for a person?

I'll leave you with this video - of one of my favorite childhood cartoon intros:

THERE IS NO FEAR......UNDERDOG IS HERE!

Tell me what you think.

Oh, and tell me where you're from. Simply type your first name in the "name" field and then put "from _______". I love seeing where TBA readers are from.

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