I hate fear. I have been held back by fear my whole life. Fear of rejection, fear of falling short, fear of pain, fear of loss. All kinds of fear. Prison was a good thing for me in regards to fear. 
I came into prison scared to death. I was afraid of all that I had heard and seen on TV. I was sure I was going to get sliced open or raped or dropped off the tier. I have had some terrifying experiences, don’t get me wrong, but I have had to face them head on. I have had to look someone who hates me right in the eye. 
I want you to know before I continue that I still get scared. I still have doubts and worries. I still stay up at night begging God to help me in some situations. But, I fear personal failure more then any person.
This is what I know, let’s just get transparent; I know that I am always going to have an uphill battle because of my past. I never accomplished much because of fear. Mainly because of body image issues, self confidence and not wanting to face my sexual identity. Coming to prison put me lower then low. I had nothing left to lose. I had lost my family, every friend, my future, any chance of a relationship (I still struggle with this) and frankly my will to survive. What was left to lose? I had no pride, no self worth, I had already lost anything I cared for. I let fear of ridicule or embarrassment cripple me. I let this go on for a few years in here. 
There came a point when I was facing hater after hater, day after day of taking the full brunt of constant ridicule and hatred that I just got fed up with it. I had to decide that I had had enough of it. I realized that if you allow others to influence you you’ll amount to their failures. You can’t do what they couldn’t. The want you to see their misery. Your feelings mean nothing, not to them. Why? Because what you’ve gone through can’t be as bad as what they’ve gone through. Its easier to point at me and my faults and differences to ease their pain. As long as I stay embarrassed and crippled they feel superior.
Enough of that! When you accomplish something they won’t cheer you on. They won’t be there to apologize or learn. They just keep on pulling you down, backward. Don’t let fear of rejection hold you back. Once you start your path to victory your new friends will be those traveling the same path. More importantly, you’ll be traveling for yourself. Your only fear should be the death of spirit. There is only One who can end your spirit.
Don’t be afraid to risk it all for your dream. In fact, big dreams require big investments. Like all of you. Every last piece.

Go get it, With Love
Jeff Utnage 823469