Stop Letting Fear Hold You Back

Lady being held back from fear

Stop Letting Fear Hold You Back

Is Fear holding you back from achieving your dreams?

How often have you thought to yourself that you would love to be, have, or do something new or different? But that little voice in your head pops up and tell you that the idea is too scary or that you could never achieve the outcome you desire?  Stop letting fear hold you back.

lady covering her face with hand stops signal

Acknowledge your fear

This is common for all of us. The level, of which we can overcome our fears and ‘Just Do It’, depends upon our ability to take risks and put the fear to the background. To acknowledge the fear and use it to our advantage. To consciously listen to that voice and reply by taking action that proves it wrong.

Fear is totally normal. We have been hardwired to use fear as a survival technique. Problem is, there are not too many lions ready to eat us or people that are going to hunt and take over our cave. So how do we act with less fear? How can we move forward to reach our goals and to stop letting the fear prevent us from reaching our full potential.

Its all in your head

Fear is just an imagined thing. It is your brain telling you that the outcome is going to be bad. This may be based upon a past situation or experience. It can then be highlighted by environment, mindset and physiology.  Take for example the scary movie. If it is the middle of the day and the sun is shining and you are watching a scary movie with a group of friends who are all laughing and enjoying the movie together. It is less likely to feel as scary as if you are watching the same movie all alone on Halloween night by yourself with all the lights turned off. 

Our brain will automatically trigger a response to a situation, what you can do is build awareness around the response you are having which will create the outcome. If you can say to yourself that you know you did this before and it was scary but today the situation is different, then you will create a different outcome. Let’s think of giving a public speech. When you were at high school this was maybe one of the worst things you could be asked to do. Is this the same as presenting an item at your work meeting or seminar?

stop letting fear hold you back from public speaking

Today, it is likely that the circumstances are very different. Maybe you are an expert in your field, or have had an opportunity to be really familiar and comfortable with the material you are going to speak about. It is also possible that your audience is much different to the group of judgmental teenagers you may have presented to in the past. There are a number of things you can use as a focus point to tell your brain that the new situation is very different to the past one that fear response is based upon.

Think about the worst possible outcome and really how likely that is to happen. Often our brain will put a picture in our head of the worst case, but as a general rule this is very unlikely to happen. If this did come to pass, how bad will the outcome be?  Is it something that you could live with? Stop letting the fear of worst possible outcome hold you back from a possible great outcome.

stop letting your fear hold you back, trust your instinct

Overcoming your fear

Here are some simple tips to overcome fear:

–         Feel the fear as to where it sits in your body. Feel the intensity and grade it out of ten. What colour is it? What elements does it have? (Such as heavy, thick, wobbly)

–         Talk to someone about your fear. Often just verbalising it will make it seem less frightening.

–         Journal. This can be about your fears or could be about the things you want to achieve by overcoming the fears.

–         Be Grateful. Be mindful and grateful of the opportunities that are in front of you.

–         Take Action. The only way to overcome the fear is to do the action and replace those pathways in your brain to a new way of thinking.

These are simple ways to reduce fear. If you have a phobia, the steps are the same process; however you may need some support and assistance to take you through tools to assist with removing this paralysing fear. Techniques such as hypnosis or the Sedona method may be useful in combating a phobia.

The last thing I will say is that the only way to overcome fear is to move forward, take the risk and see how it turns out. There is never a perfect time, just taking the chance when it is presented to you, give it a go and see what happens. The only way to change your fear response is to build a different outcome. Let your brain know the event you are presented with does not always end up with a negative result.

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