“I remember when I was a child I used to be scared of monsters. Late at night, falling asleep, I clearly heard noises coming from the cupboard, or under the bed, or from any place I supposed monsters loved to hide.

I couldn’t wait to grow up, to become brave enough to fight those terrifying creatures, like my parents did. Every time, I felt I couldn’t handle it on my own.

But now, as a grown up, I have discovered that a monsters’ favourite place to hide is in my mind. Between my thoughts, in my dreams, they always find a way to poison my journey. I feel them, sneaking around disguised as positive and encouraging energy, only to turn against me when I least expect it.

How do I get rid of something that lives inside of me? How do I fight the monsters, as I’ve been waiting to do since I was a child? Unfortunately, I can’t. Nobody can. Actually, the more you fight the stronger they become.

So one day (or night) I decided to face them, to take a deep breath and face all my old childhood demons turned into new sophisticated fears. And so I did. I kept my eyes closed for a while, trying to prepare myself for something that could never be prepared for, and then I opened them, exhaling. There they were: a bunch of creatures – sharp teeth, black wings, shining claws – staring at me, doing nothing, as if they had been waiting for that moment all their life long.

Hilarious? Yeah, to say the least. They were not chasing me, as I had assumed. They were running after me just to be seen, recognised, known. All they ever wanted was for me to stare at them, no more no less.

Fear, something so uncomfortable, always uninvited, destabilising and confusing and yet, something we cannot live without.

I thought the solution was to fight it. Well, I couldn’t had been more wrong.

The secret to coexisting with monsters is to accept them, to embrace them, to feel them. It may sound unconventional, but I think the key is to turn your monsters from something you’re scared of, into a defence weapon.

Now I know its purpose: Fear is there to keep poisonous thoughts away from me, and poisonous people as well. Fear is a loyal soldier whose job is to protect me. From what? Well, sometimes a judgement, sometimes a flattery.

Tell me, did you think that the monster was fixed on the girl?

Look again…

It is not fixed on me, its gaze is fixed on you.”