Today I wish to talk about one of the most common emotions we face on a daily basis FEAR! I have every reason to believe that fear is so common that we may be inhaling more of ‘fear’ than the air that is necessary for our survival!
You may have heard that FEAR has two abbreviations associated with it – Face Everything And Rise or Forget Everything And Run. What action you take, depends on how you wish to tackle the situation. Now, there is nothing wrong in running away from the situation – you may avoid the fear or the situation for that very moment, but let me tell you that the same fear will manifest itself into some other form in the future.
What exactly is this fear?
Fear is nothing but a response to a threat which could either be a real threat or a perceived threat. There are different kinds of fear that people experience at various stages of their life. It could either be a fear of failure, fear of being judged, fear of being neglected/ridiculed, fear of public speaking and the most recent one is the fear of being trolled on social media.
If we are stuck in a fire then our natural response would be to get scared and this is absolutely fine because fire is a real threat. But fear of public speaking and/or fear of being trolled online are perceived threats or perceived fear. It is this perceived fear that stops us from moving ahead in life and hampers our growth.
So how does one overcome fear and move ahead in life?
Let me offer you three magical steps that will enable you to overcome any fear in life.
Step 1: Connect – the first step would be to connect to your fears. Every fear comes with a story/message. Go back in time to find out the root cause behind your fears. Most of our fears have their roots in our childhood. Connect with that feeling and story without any judgement.
Step 2: Identify benefits offered – identify benefits your fear is offering provided you overcome the fear. For instance, if you overcome your fear of public speaking then you may get invited at events to talk plus you get fame and money. Also, if you overcome your fear of being trolled online then you get a chance to promote your brand and business online.
Step 3: Get your fear to work for you – the third and the most important step is to actually get your fears to work for you. Most people, stop after the second step. This is how you can get your fear to actually work for you.
a) Take baby steps – identify one or two things you could do to overcome your fear. Let us take the example of fear of public speaking. Look for opportunities at home or at work that allow you to speak in smaller groups.
b) Learn from your experience – introspect on your performance in small groups. Make a note of the positives so as to repeat it in the future. Also, make a note of the developmental areas without any judgement. This will help you move ahead. You may hear your inner critic calling you names and even discouraging you – just be aware of those messages and identify to the benefits you may get just by overcoming your fear!
c) Take the leap of faith — remember that fear has no mind of its own — it is your own mind that lets itself being controlled. Your mind is stronger than your fear so remind yourself about your own capabilities and take the plunge!
These steps can be applied to overcome any fear.
Let me give you examples of two great leaders who once had a fear of public speaking. Did you know that Mahatma Gandhi and Warren Buffet both had a fear of public speaking? They became great leaders by overcoming their fears!
So the next time you are faced with any fear – remember to Face Everything And Rise!
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