When I say to people at the very beginning of a workshop that I am damn scared/nervous/insecure, they are often surprised (and even suspicious-“Yoram, are you acting or is it real???”). Why am I still so afraid, after standing in front of so many people and teaching so many workshops? What is it at the core of my fear?
At the root of fear:
At the route of fear, hidden deep inside, I find 2 things:
1. My worst case scenario imagination
2. My ‘Life Project’
1. My worst case scenario imagination:
When I teach, I fear to fail: That words will not come out of me, and I will not be clear nor inspiring. Then people would be dozing off in their chairs looking at the clock and the ceiling, thinking: “I should have not come here…??”. One by one they will leave the room, and I will stay behind, together with the assistants… humiliation.
When they will come back home, people will ask them: “How was the workshop with Yoram?” And they will answer “It was horrible”. Even years later, whenever my name will come up, they will say: “Oh, I was once in his workshop it was terrible”.
Then no one will come to my workshops anymore. I will have no job. I will become homeless. I will sit on a pavement, alone, with my torn old grey raincoat, wet. A man is passing by with an umbrella, I look at him and he turns his head to look away. I slowly freezing there and die on the pavement while people are walking by, it is cold, no one notices. It takes a few days until someone notices that this thing on the pavement smells. They invite the garbage company to pick it up, mixing me with the garbage in the car, dropping the leftover on a mountain of garbage somewhere..
Writing it down, I feel a trembling shiver deep in my heart and belly. Many of my actions are in order to avoid this scenario to happen.
2. My life project:
At the very bottom of this horrible imagination, I meet my Life project.
‘My Life Project’ is a certain need that feels like: “Everything in my life is about this”- everywhere I go, everything I do- this is actually what I am searching for, everywhere.
When I dive into the bottom of my worst case scenario imagination, suddenly, I see there sitting, smiling at me, is my need: The need to Belong to the human tribe– my need for connection, to love and be loved, to be wanted, received, accepted and welcome as I am.
This is all I want, at each moment in my life, deep at the bottom of all my actions (including writing this email to you) I am searching the experience of being welcome to the human tribe.
My fear is there to protect what is the most precious to me- my belonging to the human tribe.
To be Lonely, secluded, isolated, segregated, excluded, ignored, rejected, cut off, separation… are at the very bottom of what people are most afraid of, and we do a million of weird actions to try to make sure these will not happen: We buy expensive clothes, doing funny hair styles, lying (or behaving/speaking differently to our honesty), working our asses off, and even getting married and making children- to be sure we will not be lonely when we are old.
I love meeting people with physical or mental disabilities. Often I am inspired by a certain pure connectedness they have to what it is to be human. So often, the deepest pain I hear them express is not about their physical pains nor about their physical limitations. Here is one example (especially the first 3.5 minutes): Link
When I was young, I was taught that ‘courageous’ is cool, and ‘afraid’ is really not cool. When I grew up I got involved in the ‘personal development’ arena, there I took the message that ‘fear prevents us from living life fully’ or in other words- One should heal (= get rid of) one’s fear in order to be free.
I do not want to heal my fear, nor do I want to get rid of it. I want to let (the intelligence of) my fear guide me in life, to guide me to live humanly/compassionately with my fellow human beings.