Never Take Counsel of Your Fears

“Never Take Counsel of Your Fears” – Andrew Jackson

I came across this quote recently and I wanted to share it and some of my thoughts about it with you all.

Andrew Jackson was one of our most influential Presidents…

He was born in the U.S. two years after his parents immigrated from Ireland. He endured a rough childhood. Participated in the Revolutionary War as a courier when he was a teenager and became a POW. War and disease spared none of his immediate family and he was orphaned at the age of 14.

He pursued a law career and entered into business. He was appointed as the commander of the Tennessee militia in 1801 and became a war hero in the War of 1812 for his defense of New Orleans. He earned the nickname of “Old Hickory” for his character of toughness around this time.

He goes on to become our 7th President of the U.S.

His many acheivements overshadow one other claim to fame he has. He is the ONLY U.S. President to have paid off the national debt.

I thought this was amazing when I read it. It is interesting to think that we have always been a debtor nation and will probably continue to be. My only question is, “What would Andrew Jackson do today if he were President?”

But I digress, this post is more about your fears and what to do with them. Jackson’s background helps us understand why he came up with this quote.

He was known for his toughness and accomplished a lot because of it. He gained a huge hatred for the British growing up. And in an ironic twist of fate that hatred produced a lot of good. He helped to secure America’s freedom from Britain.

If you are ever to accomplish any good in this world you must refuse to let fear stop you.

Fear will keep you from doing anything! It will paralyze you. Fear may keep you from harm, but it also keeps you from everything else as well.

Fear’s answer will always be a resounding NO!

Even when the outcome will be hugely beneficial, fear tells you the sacrifice will be too great.

Sure they could have surrendered at New Orleans, but at what cost? Fear tells you to surrender and spare lives. Courage tells you to fight and win your freedom!

Courage tells you to make their losses so great that they will never consider attacking you again.

This is the power that comes from courage, and freedom from fear.

Do you fear losing your job? Losing your pension or 401k? If you have recently become unemployed do you fear being unable to find another job with similar pay and benefits? Do you fear starting a business? Do you fear what other people think of you? Do you fear moving to a place with a lower cost of living? Do you fear that you are inadequate for the challenges that will come?

Fear tells you to freeze and do nothing, or to run away. Courage tells you to push through and overcome.

Like Winston Churchill who came after him said…

“This is the lesson: never give in, never give in, never, never, never, never—in nothing, great or small, large or petty—never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.”

Most often the enemy we have today is fear itself. We must not listen to it. We must not yield to it. We must not give in to it. We must take it, and beat it into submission, and let courage stand tall over it. Then we will gain the freedom over fear which is rightfully ours…

11 thoughts on “Never Take Counsel of Your Fears”

  1. Great post, Jeremy. You leave much to think about…

    On Jackson, he also warned of forming a central bank that could print its own money, which would debase the currency and guarantee inflation. He was a great proponent of the gold standard, which is “real money.” Paper money is more like an illusion with catastrophic potential, as we have recently learned.

    On Churchill, he also said, “If you are going through Hell, keep going.”

    On almost any great leader or success story (known or unknown), the submission to extreme emotion is generally considered a mistake among them. There is also such a thing as a “great follower.” Greatness in leaders and followers requires courage.

    The point at which most people give in to the inner voice that says, “Turn back,” the courageous know that success is drawing closer (or their faith and conviction outweighs their fear).

    What would we have missed if any of these historical figures submitted to fear?

    Rosa Parks
    George Washington
    Christopher Columbus
    Jesus Christ

    “You have power over your mind — not outside events. Realize this and you will find strength.” ~ Marcus Aurelius

    “A man who fears suffering is already suffering from what he fears.” ~ Michel de Montaigne

    “You block your dream when you allow your fear to grow bigger than your faith.” ~ Mary Manin Morrissey

    Kent @ The Financial Philosopher’s last blog post..Finding Beauty in Ugliness

  2. Jeremy,

    When I got hired to work as a paramedic for LAFD I had a fear of heights so I made myself climb ladders at every opportunity.

    After years of flying I developed a fear of flying, so I became a pilot.

    Face your fears and beat the ever-lovin’-snot out of ’em.



    Tumblemoose’s last blog post..Ebooks: charge or give away

  3. Oh Boy! Andrew Jackson all that comes to mind is his dueling for his wife’s honor.

    I admire Theodore Roosevelt.
    my favorite of his quotes:

    “Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checked by failure…than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in a gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat.”


    “When you play, play hard; when you work, don’t play at all.”

    Then these guys have said some cool things.

    James W. Frick

    “Don’t tell me where your priorities are. Show me where you spend your money and I’ll tell you what they are.”

    Jim Rohn

    “Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune.”

    But the truest words ever said:

    “Only Thing We Have to Fear Is Fear Itself”

    FDR (Franklin D. Roosevelt)said this in his first inaugural address.

    Great article Jeremy.I love history.

    Bunny got Blog’s last blog post..Value Driven Society

  4. I really like this one, Jeremy! You did a great job of adding your thoughts while still letting the wisdom of these great men show through.

    You’re totally right about our state of mind these days. Filled with fear we seem to cave into every bit of possible discomfort. As a result we are finding our foundations become weak as we try to bandage our problems instead of facing them head on.

    Definitely something to chew on. Thanks for this. Eric

    Eric Hamm | Motivate Thyself’s last blog post..Simplicity: The Value of JUST ENOUGH

  5. Have you read Andrew Jackson’s speech on bank bailouts?

    “I too have been a close observer of the doings of the Bank of the United States. I have had men watching you for a long time, and am convinced that you have used the funds of the bank to speculate in the breadstuffs of the country. When you won, you divided the profits amongst you, and when you lost, you charged it to the Bank. You tell me that if I take the deposits from the Bank and annul its charter I shall ruin ten thousand families. That may be true, gentlemen, but that is your sin! Should I let you go on, you will ruin fifty thousand families, and that would be my sin! You are a den of vipers and thieves. I have determined to rout you out and, by the Eternal, (bringing his fist down on the table) I will rout you out!”

    Chris’s last blog post..2009 Martial Arts Tuition Survey

  6. Hi Jeremy,

    If we ever give in to fear and stand still, we might miss out tons of good stuff lying ahead of us. Fear is only limiting us and it is only when we have the courage to step into the area of uncertainty then we will achieve see the beauty of what lies ahead.

    Personal Development Blogger

    Vincent’s last blog post..Personal Development Carnival (16th March 2009)

  7. I agree, fear is bad news all round, it limits you and imprisons you without you even realising it. Another of your presidents, Roosevelt, said: “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself – nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance.”

    Julian’s last blog post..6 Steps To Creating A Powerful Morning Routine

  8. Fear is supposed to help us, but it’s become an automatic default and we are just afraid of everything. Present company excepted.

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