Tuesday, August 7, 2012

The Fear That it Might End

I read a blurb of a book review on two novels about love written by a French philosopher and a scientist, in the back of an old copy of The Economist of all places.  I don't remember the name of the philosopher, or the scientist, or the books, but I do remember reading something interesting in the review.

One of the authors wrote that part of the great thing about love, is the fear that it could end. That to acknowledge the risk and the vulnerability that comes along with falling in love is crucial to the experience being as wonderful as it is.

I thought that this was a refreshingly positive way to look at fear. In love, sure, but also in almost every other aspect of life.

The fear that it might end is most certainly present in romantic relationships, but it can extend to friendships, and family, and colleagues. No relationship is certain. But the fear of it ending is motivation to keep working at them. To call, and write, and make plans, and time, and have hard conversations, and forgive and forget, and to grow close to people.

The fear that it might end is the reason we show up for work everyday at Thread.  That the opportunity to do something we love and believe in could end, makes us fight and work to make sure we can keep doing it.

The fear that my health, both mental and physical might end is what keeps me running. It keeps me motivated to sign up for races and train for months to finish marathons, and take care of myself.

I think that embracing the fear of the end could be really powerful.

Eventually, it will all end. And if that's not motivation to give something back to the world, and enjoy yourself while doing it, I don't know what is.

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