Fear gets to the best of us, whether it is fear of failure, fear of success or even fear of fear. All of us have experienced fear at some point in our lives and it can be a real stumbling block that holds us back from being truly successful.
Fear can’t hold you back forever, if you don’t let it. There are several ways to overcome fear, here are my top 9:
1. SEPARATE REALITY FROM PERCEPTION
Ask yourself what is really going on, locate the facts and place them over your feelings. Identify the filters through which you view people and things around.
Perception is a very powerful thing, and how you feel about your situation dictates how you respond. So think positively and you’ll give yourself a much better chance of success. This won’t happen overnight; practice with just one thought. What is one recurring negative/fearful thought you have? Work on reversing this one thought. Overtime, this will become a habit.
2. IDENTIFY THE TRIGGER
Trigger is any stimulus that impacts our behavior. It can be internal or external, conscious or unconscious. Figure out what it is in a situation that triggers you. Learning to identify it will help you learn to combat it.
Our environment is a non-stop triggering mechanism whose impact on our behavior is too significant to be ignored.
~ Marshall Goldsmith
3. KNOW WHERE FEAR LIVES IN YOUR BODY
A lot of times, fear takes over physically. It affects different people different ways.
People often refer to the physiological changes that occur when experiencing fear as the fight-or-flight response. Breathing rate increases, heart rate follows suit, peripheral blood vessels (in the skin, for instance) constrict, central blood vessels around vital organs dilate to flood them with oxygen and nutrients, and muscles are pumped with blood, ready to react.
Identify if/how it affects your physical body and do the work to take care of your body.
Ex: if you hold stress in your back, you can learn stretches, foam rolling, etc. to avoid the pain.
4. PRACTICE GRATITUDE
Simple yet the Powerful way. Just being aware and grateful to the things you have around or grateful about the people & your loved ones in your life. Everyday, list out 1-3 things you are thankful for. It doesn’t matter how big or small it is, gratitude helps shift the mind into a positive light, which overtime, overcomes fear.
Start each day with a positive thought and a grateful heart
~ Roy T. Bennett
5. LISTEN TO YOUR INNER VOICE
You just have to learn how to tap into your intuition and then act on those whispers, even when they seem to make no logical sense. All your life there has been an inner voice offering guidance, gently and sometimes urgently.
Monitor your inner conversations. If you wouldn’t say it to a friend, don’t say it to yourself. Speak positively to yourself and remind yourself of your strengths.
6. CREATE A NEW ASSOCIATION
The brain, like a computer, is complex. It organizes the world into so-called neural networks where everything is interconnected, which is why this type of memory is also called 'Associative Memory'. It loves to create links and associations so as to streamline the process of converting thinking to acting. Our associations dictate our behavior.
What fires together wires together
Remind yourself that the feeling and the moment will pass. Focus on the positive outcome of the situation, rather than the scary in between
7. PRACTICE CONSCIOUS BREATHING EXERCISES
Breathing in and out is very important, and it is enjoyable. Our breathing is a link between our body and mind. Often our mind is thinking of one thing and our body is doing another. By conscious breathing 'IN' and 'OUT', we unify mind and body; simple bring them together and we are in PRESENT moment. Just take 5 deep, long breaths at any point to calm and center yourself. It is best to start your day with this, but feel free to practice all day long.