This inspiring quote by Marianne Williamson is from her book, A Return To Love: Reflections on the Principles of A Course in Miracles, Harper Collins, 1992. From Chapter 7, Section 3 (Pg. 190-191).“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
It is often misattributed to Nelson Mendela, who is quite quotable.
The topic of overcoming fear is a reoccurring theme in my life as I've dealt with my anxiety disorder and struggled to find my way through situations I thought myself incapable of conquering.
Last September I found myself in a new team at work, and the subject of the "Getting to Know You" board. Cindy, the fabulous engineer of said board, asked, among other things, for my favorite quote. I hadn't thought about it for a very long time, but it came up quickly on an Internet search of Nelson Mendela. I made a copy for her, and a copy for me to put on my cubicle wall. I read it everyday. I started to notice how much fear ruled my life. I was afraid of taking too long to get home from work, I was deleting all my texts to and from my sister as soon as they were sent, and I was always afraid of taking a wrong step or saying the wrong thing. Ex wasn't violent, but his barrage of questions and disapproval were relentless.
One day in November I gave up my fear of talking about myself to other people and began talking about my life and marriage with some coworkers. Just hearing my stories out loud made me realize the truth of my situation. I would tell any other woman that she needed to have the self-respect and dignity to leave. Somehow I found what self-respect I had remaining and I chose to "shine." I am no longer someone who allows others to define who I am. Unfortunately, it required leaving behind those who would not allow this change, but I have found many encouraging people along my way. I am no longer afraid of who I am. I am "brilliant, gorgeous, talented, (and) fabulous!"
Here are some more quotes attributed to Nelson Mendela:
I haven't done the research, so I'm just trusting that most of these words are actually his.
"I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear."
"It always seems impossible until it's done."
"There is no passion to be found playing small - in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living."
"I am the captain of my soul."
"As I walked out the door toward the gate that would lead to my freedom, I knew if I didn't leave my bitterness and hatred behind, I'd still be in prison."