If you know the enemy and know yourself you need not fear the results of a hundred battles. ~Sun Tzu
Consider these examples:
Fear of abandonment and being left alone is a common fear.
It’s also common to fear the loss of autonomy or freedom.
Trust issues can also be fear-based. You might be afraid that you won’t be accepted fully and therefore always need to control the other person to ensure certainty in your relationship.
Many people deal with fear and anxiety by shopping, online purchases or gambling, which can create debt.
Some simply fear discomfort and are unable to let go of that expensive car or morning coffee.
Procrastination can be caused by fear of failure or the perceived discomfort of performing an unpleasant task.
For example, you might fear missing out and therefore constantly check your email or Facebook likes instead of working.
Stuck in a job you dislike.
You might be afraid that no other decent jobs exist for you.
You might be fearful of giving up your benefits or getting a new job that pays less.
You might be afraid of going through the application process and competing for a better job.
These are just a few examples. Consider other parts of your life that are challenging.
Can you see how fear could be having a negative impact?
How to handle your fears that are holding you back:
Realise that fear is uncomfortable, but it isn’t a good reason to avoid doing something.
Fear is helpful if you’re considering doing something physically dangerous.
But at the end of the day, fear is simply a feeling.
As been said, FEAR stands for False Evidence Appearing Real.
There’s no reason to let fear guide every decision you make as possible outcomes is mostly represented inaccurately in our minds.
We are not good at predicting things.
Think about the fearful activity and simply breathe.
Your body is unable to maintain a fear reaction in the long term.
There’s a psychological technique called “flooding.”
In flooding, a person is exposed to their fear without being allowed any reprieve.
This exposure eventually extinguishes the feelings associated with fear.
Think about the activity that makes you uncomfortable and focuses on taking long, deep breaths.
Also mess with the imagery in your mind, like turning the whole scene into a cartoon, or watching it from front to back and back to front in hyper-speed in black and white.
Notice how you start to feel better.
Make a list of the ways that fear is holding you back.
If some part of your life is in complete turmoil, it’s likely that you made poor decisions in the past.
How did fear affect your decision-making abilities at that time?
Remember the times you were fearful and still made a good choice.
You’ve likely had times where you felt fear but managed to take the appropriate course of action anyway.
Remind yourself of those times and remember how strong you can be.
Practice dealing with discomfort.
Take a situation that you find mildly uncomfortable.
Perhaps it’s eating carrots or talking to an attractive member of the opposite sex.
Force yourself to deal with small doses of discomfort, and increase the level of exposure over time.
Although it’s challenging to give up the habit of avoidance, you’ll be surprised at how much you can tolerate.
Realise that discomfort and fear are frequently good things.
If you’re not doing anything that makes you uncomfortable, your life is likely to stay the same.
It’s only when you push your comfort level that new things can begin to happen.
Fear is the most common cause of challenges in life.
Learn to work through fear and gain the ability to make positive choices.
You’ll boost your self-esteem and enjoy a happier life as a result.
You’ll discover greater strength in yourself that you ever thought possible.
Also, learn to embrace discomfort as a positive sign that you are doing something to move the needle in your life and that it’s about to change for the better.
Just get started today!