At the end of last year, the first school that I began relief teaching at requested that I come in for an interview so that they could get to know me and run through school procedures before they started giving me work. This was the first teaching-related interview I’d experienced at the time, and even though it wasn’t for a permanent job, I was extremely nervous about it. Thankfully, it went as smoothly as I could have hoped, but at the very end the lady I was meeting with said something that stuck with me. While welcoming me to the team of staff and wishing me luck with my future career she ended by saying two words: ‘be fearless’. Even though at the time it left me a little speechless, I didn’t think much of it until I was reflecting on the conversation later on. ‘Be fearless’. What a powerful statement that is. How does one ‘be fearless’ in their endeavours? What does that mean?
There is a quote by Jennifer Lee, which reads ‘be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire’. I am beginning to realise what a beautiful piece of advice that is. So often we become discouraged from pursuing our passions because of fear. We may not even recognise fear at work, when it comes in the form of doubt or ‘logic’. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines the word ‘fearless’ as ‘being free from fear’. I like that this interpretation uses the word ‘free’, as if to highlight the fact that fear restricts and binds us. To be fearless is in one sense to be free from limitations, particularly those you place on yourself. For me to be fearless in my pursuits it means that I need to be able to take risks and move forward even when fears are holding me back. And what is there for me to be scared of? Failure? Embarrassment? Pressure? Disappointment? These things are all inevitable. With the great unknown before me, and nothing to lose, I choose to be fearless.