It’s safe to say that most us wrestle with some kind of frustration on a daily basis. This kind of dissatisfaction can be with ourselves, over what we can or can’t get done—or with others, who may deny us our wish or otherwise disappoint our expectations. Accordingly, we can feel as though we are blocked, incapable, unable, not strong or wise enough to move ahead as we would.

The more we feel the unwanted presence of this limitation—accompanied as it always is by a host of painful dark thoughts and emotions—the more our attention is diverted to wrestle with them. Without seeing it, our struggle is no longer with wanting to understand the actual cause of our situation, but is now with these negative states that we don’t want. Feeling resentment over what we regret about ourselves only makes sense to the mind that believes soaking in a mud bath is the best way to get clean!

To some extent we know that negative states limit our freedom because, in their dark presence, even our natural power of making proper choices is put to the test. And if our choices in such moments are (at least) in part produced by these self-limiting states, then how can what limits us help to free us of anything? It’s obvious: it cannot. What are we to do?

We need a whole new and true understanding of what “living without limits” really means. It does not mean the power to manifest endless possessions, or to access instant pleasures on demand. Even if one could achieve such ends, his or her life would still be fearfully empty for having to continually refill it with what must pass in time. What is limitless in life—that which is without end within us—is our God-given potential to transcend limitations. Let’s take a simple example:

Those of us who have ever done any kind of work on strengthening our physical body know that at one point or another it will tell us, “Enough! No more! I can’t go any further!” We know, by this pain or discomfort we feel—especially when it comes to conditioning workouts—that our body is saying it has reached a certain limit beyond which it does not want to go. But, in the same moment, our past experience knows the body always “complains” when it doesn’t want to go further than it’s used to going. So, knowing this pain is just part of what must be paid in order to grow stronger, we ignore the “warning” and push on to achieve the higher result we seek. Why do we make this choice? Because we understand, ahead of time, that this limit we have reached is only a temporary one; it is not the end of what is possible for us to do.

Now, can we see that this same reality must hold true regardless of whatever “body” it is in which we encounter such limitation—be it physical, psychological, or spiritual? When we reach the point where parts of us start to feel some kind of pain, some discomfort, it’s not that there isn’t more we could do; no, what limits us here is what we are afraid to go through in that moment.

What is it about this kind of fear that makes it so powerful? The answer may be hard to believe: fear’s power over us is nothing more than the way it causes us to forget the truth of ourselves, which is this: we are created to eternally transcend the limits of our present nature, to transform who and what we have been in the very moment it ceases to serve the good of us. But, because we have forgotten this or—more accurately speaking—because we are asleep to its power in us, we are compelled to search for, find, and then believe in “powers” outside of ourselves that always betray us in our hour of need.

Actualizing our spiritual right to live without the frustration of fearful limitations is not a question of achieving something new; it begins with choosing to end a relationship with that which has never been true. So, it isn’t a question of “What do I do?” but “What must I bring an end to?”

Whenever we consider striking a long-overdue blow for our freedom—whether it’s to walk away from an abusive relationship, start a new career, or maybe just spend more time by ourselves—these fears only grant us their consent to move ahead after they’ve considered our proposed action in the light of what may become of us should we take it.

But the truth is, the more we prepare to be fearless, the more afraid we become! Here’s the new action to find the fearless life: Meet every moment awake to what it wants to give to us: a life essentially limitless in its newness. At the same time, detect and reject any fearful imagining about what might be lost should we step into the unknown moment before us.

This article is excerpted from “The Essential Laws of Fearless Living” by Guy Finley

Author's Bio: 

Guy Finley is an internationally renowned spiritual teacher and bestselling self-help author. He is the Founder and Director of Life of Learning Foundation, a nonprofit center for transcendent self-study located in Merlin, Oregon. He also hosts the Foundation’s Wisdom School — an on-line self-discovery program for seekers of higher self-knowledge. He is the best-selling author of The Secret of Letting Go and 45 other books and audio programs that have sold over 2 million copies, in 26 languages, worldwide. Guy’s latest book Relationship Magic: Waking Up Together applies decades of spiritual wisdom to practical relationship challenges, transforming any relationship from mundane to magical!