Does your throat close up at the thought of standing in front of your peers to give a presentation at work?
Are you afraid that people wonâ€™t like you if you say â€śnoâ€ť?
Does the idea of starting your own business, or changing careers send shivers down your spine?
Some of the things you fear can keep you confined in a prison of immobility unable to make the necessary change to move forward. And, if not addressed, fear will eventually eat away at your self-confidence and prevent you from feeling empowered, decisive and free to make choices that enrich your life.
Although fear is a natural automatic response to scary situations, it’s not meant to block you from trying new things, following your dreams, or living your best life. Fear is a problem when it holds you hostage and prevents you from experiencing new and interesting things.
Here are some things you can do to create new thoughts about fear:
- Inspect your expectations â€“ A common acronym for fear is “False Expectations Appearing Real”.Â Unrealistic expectations are a major contributor to fear. When you expect the worst to happen, it usually does.Â You can balance fear by thinking positively and setting realistic expectations for yourself and others.
- Question your fears â€“ Ask yourself if the fear has merit. Most things we fear will never happen. For example, you may be asked to speak in front of a group and you spend time worrying that you’ll fall flat on your face.Â But, is this likely to happen? Probably not. Question the possibility of what might happen. Being well prepared goes a long way in alleviating a fear such as public speaking.
- Weigh the pros and cons â€“ Fear loses its power when you remember that itâ€™s simply a feeling. Except in life threatening situations, it canâ€™t harm you. You can choose to ignore it, give in to it or move forward anyway. What is the likelihood of your fear materializing? If you make a mistake, can you correct it?
If you weigh the advantages and disadvantages of the fearful situation, you may discover that a negative expectation is guiding your decision-making.
Researchers tell us that the majority of things we worry about will never happen. I know thatâ€™s hard to believe when fear has a hold on you. But, if you can remember that conquering fear means you are empowered and you know when most of your fear is groundless, it becomes easier to overcome.
To learn more about how to conquer fear, I invite you to join our self-care circle and get your FREE special report, Building Strong Boundaries to Create Breathing Space in Your Hectic Life.
Gladys M. Anderson helps nurses, teachers, social workers, therapists and other busy overwhelmed women to set limits so they have more time, more joy and more energy for self-care