Posted by: Cathy | May 15, 2013

Overcoming Fears (reader-choice)

Angela responded to my poll and said she loves posts about confronting your fears, so this one is for Angela!

On Monday, I was talking about superstitions. A superstition is “a belief or notion, not based on reason or knowledge.” In that respect, you could say that most of our fears are superstitions.

Fears are an anticipation and anxiety over what might happen.

* A fear of public speaking is a fear of judgment
* A fear of failure is a fear of embarrassment
* A fear of success is a fear of what comes next
* A fear of heights is a fear of falling

Unless you can see the future, though, all of these fears are not based on reason or knowledge. You can’t know the future, so don’t let it derail you in the present!

In the present moment, you are probably safe. You are probably sitting at a desk in your home or office, in a temperature-controlled room with modern amenities. You don’t have to fend off wild animals or threatening weather.

Coach Blog 051513 Whenever a fear rears up, just take a breath and bring yourself back to the present. Remind yourself that you are safe. Touch your desk or a wall, something sturdy and immediate. Tell yourself that you don’t know the future. If you’re going to anticipate something, why not pick the best-case scenario? It’s just as likely as the worst-case one; even more so if you have done your best and prepared for the outcome you desire. Keep putting one foot in front of the other in the direction of your goal. The more you keep moving, the more evidence you accumulate against your fears.

You can do it! Stay in the present moment and tell your fears to shove off.

Advertisements

Responses

  1. Thanks for taking my request! Now, I have a question. You suggested, “If you’re going to anticipate something, why not pick the best-case scenario? It’s just as likely as the worst-case one; even more so if you have done your best and prepared for the outcome you desire.”

    So what would you advise if someone hadn’t done her best to prepare for the desired outcome, or if there was no way to prepare? How do you deal with fears about outcomes of which you have no control/influence?

    • That’s a good question! Can you give me an example scenario? I keep thinking of things but finding ways you could prepare. And I would say the answer is still to stay in the present moment.

      I assume you’re talking about something sudden, like getting laid off or getting in a car accident.

      First, identify the fear. If you have anxiety, what is the root? Is it financial, social, health-related? Ask, what can I do in the present moment to protect or distance myself from this fear? What is happening right now, and what can I choose to do right now?

      If you fear losing your job, maybe start looking for a new or second job so you aren’t so dependent on the first one. If you get laid off, carefully read your severance package and understand what is happening. Take action in the present to counter your fear so it turns from an unknown into a managable quantity and just take it one step at a time.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Categories

%d bloggers like this: