I don’t know one military spouse that hasn’t had a sleepless night spent worrying.. Our lives and the lives of so many of our friends are a constant reminder that there are things to fear about military life. Our spouses serve in a time of war, military mental health is a concern and these realities cause us so much stress – and it’s time we figure out how to cut the worry and fear for our personal well-being.
The other night when a group of Army pals were debating the merits of various Yoda quotes and how they related to our lives, I listened. Though I’ve never been a Star Wars fan, I began listening to the conversation and was surprised how it gave me a whole new appreciation for this short, big eared Jedi Master and how his words could really apply to our lives.
It started out with my husband telling someone “Do or do not there is no try“. The discussion that took place about that short sentence led me to start looking for more Yoda-isms. Quickly I found what may become my favorite quote of all time…
“Fear is the path to the dark side.
Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate.
Hate leads to suffering.”
It got me to thinking about how many times since I have been a military spouse that fear has led me to the dark side. Fear has caused me to do things that I never intended to do, and react to life defensively. Fear has caused me to lose sleep, jump to conclusions and stress myself out. When I read this quote, it was as if I was looking at the cycle of my military life perfectly. I realized that my fear was causing me so much suffering, and that wasn’t the way to have a happy fulfilling life.
I realized that fear is all about the worry. The worry about what “could” happen. Not what is happening right now, but rather what ONE potential outcome could be. What if we didn’t fear that ONE result, but allowed ourselves to be hopeful? Wouldn’t our fear and worry lesson? And isn’t it true that with hope, fear can’t exist?
Fear, Anger and Hate never lead us to our dreams. In fact they strip us of our power and prevent us from taking action. We must break the cycle of fear if we want to stay away from stress and the darker side of life.
The next time I find myself feeling fearful and spending time worrying about the “what-if’s”, I’m going to think of Yoda and step away from the dark side, and I hope you will too!
~Judy Davis, the Direction Diva is a motivational speaker, author and entrepreneur as well as a military life and teen suicide prevention expert. Co-founder of DASIUM, Judy’s books Right Side Up and Warning Signs: Is Your Teen at Riskare go to resources for families and her websites are filled with tips, inspiration and resources for those looking for direction. Connect with Judy at TheDirectionDiva.com