09/18/2006 04:10 pm ET Updated Nov 17, 2011

The Process of "Becoming Fearless"

The title of Arianna"s book, On Becoming Fearless, couldn't be any more perfect. Those three words imply that becoming fearless is a process. Thank goodness for that, since there are some days when I am nothing more than a quivering ball of fear and chastise myself for not "being" fearless.

When I'm feeling apprehensive, I try to remember Arianna's triumphant story, as well as others who have managed to overcome uphill battles and, eventually, I break through the wall. But then, ever so subtly and subversively, bricks of fear begin to pile up and once again I find that I must continue to work on becoming fearless. I tell myself that I cannot give up investing in my writing career while trying not to get anxious as my savings account dwindles. I tell myself that no writer ever becomes an overnight success -- even those who are "overnight successes."

I also remind myself not to forget to glance back on occasion and look down the road that I've already traveled. Divorce is never easy, but I know that with divorce comes not only freedom from mental abuse but the need to rely on myself without having someone there to catch me. I no longer live in the financial comfort zone I once did, but I don't regret that decision, and now that I look back, I realize that it was my first giant step toward becoming fearless. Throw in the mix the need to find a new home while getting my "baby" off to college and discovering a lump in my breast, all within the same timeframe -- I cannot forget that yesterday's journey was not smooth, but I manage to keep going. I believe that is where "process" comes in.

The important thing is, I am going forward, sometimes with tear-filled doubts, but life is too short not to demand more from and for myself. Had I decided to remain paralyzed by the unknown, I wouldn't be able to distinguish the difference between fearlessness and uncertainty.

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