If you’ve been a part of our community for a while, you know that we think a lot about the ways we can support you to move forward on the things that are important to you, bring you meaning, and create the future that you long for.
Sometimes, those words can sound like the phrases on the magazines calling out to you from the local newsstand: “Be happy now!”, “Create the life you love!”, or “10 steps to living with passion.”
While we acknowledge that we may share a similar ‘vibe,’ our goal is to give you nuggets of information, actionable tools, and simple steps you can take to move forward over the course of your life—to greater personal authority, better relationships, and satisfying success.
This week’s nugget is simply:
Fear is not failure and it’s not a psychological malfunction. Fear is a part of your very wiring; it’s there to keep you safe and alive. Fear is hardwired in because it has helped us humans survive for eons.
Unchecked fear can keep you from joy rather than protecting you from harm. It can interrupt your ability to pursue that promotion, keep you from relaxing into an important relationship, or get in the way of your peace.
What can you do when fear stops you rather than protects you?
For most of us, it’s impossible to simply turn off our fear. Our body responds and we have to deal with it. And, the ways your body personally responds to fear will determine the best way for you to respond.
Spend some time this week noticing how fear shows up in you and then explore some ways to move through it.
- Talk to yourself, using your name, and remind yourself “you’ve got this!” (So Stephanie would say, “Steph, you’ve got this!”) Combining talking with yourself—like you’re your own coach—and using words that are assuring can turn things around and support you moving forward.
- Move. Walk, dance, run… Doing something physically active will help you release some of the energy that gets built up with fear.
- Name it. For some people, it’s very powerful to say out loud to someone who cares about them: “I’m so afraid right now that I don’t know what to do.” For other people, shifting the name from fear to excitement—“I am excited to do this!”—can shift the feeling as well.
- Ask for support in talking it through. You can discuss: What am I afraid of? Is there genuinely a reason for me to feel that fear? If yes, how do I reduce the thing that’s causing the fear? If no, how do I shift my reaction of fear to recognizing it's not a significant threat?
There are plenty of times and reasons to be afraid. Having the ability to use fear to stay safe is important in the face of something truly dangerous. The rest of the time, fear is just pushing at you. It’s time to push back and not let fear rule your moments!
We’re here with you,
Your Coaches and Allies at Carpenter Smith Consulting