“Tell me directly, Tom. What’s holding me back?” my client, Selena, asked.
“Fear,” I began. “What’s going on with you and fear?”
This began a powerful conversation, which was the springboard for what I’m sharing with you here.
“When you’re in action, you’re focused, and fear is a quiet voice in the background,” I wrote in two of my books (including Amazing You). As an Executive Coach and the Spoken Word Strategist, I help clients take effective action and expand their success.
What’s so important about fear being pushed into the background? First, you start making decisions that are NOT fear-based. Good for you!
Second, courage becomes your path of having both joy and a fulfilling life journey.
“Courage is not the absence of fear but rather the judgement that something is more important than fear.” – Meg Cabot
I recently shared with my own coach the four values that mean a lot to me: Love, Freedom, Creativity and Contribution.
These Four Values are more important to me than fear. Each week, as I take action to honor these Four Values, I face fear. I’ve learned from mentors that if you don’t face fear in some form, you’re not growing and stretching enough. Big success and deep fulfillment require that you step outside your comfort zone.
I invite you to avoid waiting for the absence of fear. Instead, become skillful in working with your fear.
We’ll use the O.N. process:
O – open your eyes to true fear, false fear and “the unfamiliar”
N – nurture your strength
- Open your eyes to true fear, false fear and “the unfamiliar”
Let’s look at these distinctions. I’m not giving dictionary-type definitions. My target is to give you an impression of three experiences:
True Fear: Fall off the mountain, and you’re dead.
False Fear: Failing with one product ends one’s career.
“Unfamiliar”: Something that feels strange and brings up discomfort.
It’s important to learn to move forward even while experiencing false fear and/or the unfamiliar.
In interviewing top, successful people, I’ve learned that they have become skillful about doing things that “scare them.” We’re not talking about taking unnecessary and, perhaps, foolish risks.
Instead, we’re talking about doing what I call Effective Rehearsal and putting yourself into the marketplace with a new speech, book, product, job resume or something else. Sure, appropriate risk is involved.
Assess whether you’re procrastinating on something because of a valid, True Fear. For example, if you were procrastinating on getting scuba lessons because you’re afraid that at 70 feet down, you might panic and risk your life … that might be a True Fear.
Here’s a “false fear” for me. When I was injured and had to endure a MRI exam, I discovered the experience of the exam was like being placed into a morgue drawer. I had about 1.5 inches above my nose. My heart raced, and I clenched my fists.
After that, I was concerned that wearing a diving helmet and walking on the ocean floor would give me a terrible experience of claustrophobia.
Did I give up? No. I booked the helmet-diving experience. And prior to the event, I rehearsed on dry land. I visualized while I wore a hoodie (sweatshirt) that I was walking on the ocean floor, and I was concentrating on the ocean floor – not the tiny helmet on my head. I call this, for me, Effective Rehearsal.
Yes—I did have a great experience walking on the ocean floor in the Grand Caymans. So I proved to myself that the fear of wearing a diving helmet was a “false fear.”
I invite you to not let “false fear” stop you.
How can you get more information so you can assess whether something is a “false fear”—and you can get coaching to do well?
- Nurture your strength
What is it going to take for you to face fear? Your personal strength.
Enough sleep, proper nutrition, and appropriate exercise comprise the basics for your personal strength. Add quiet time (meditation, prayer-time, and so on), and you’re on your way forward.
To be at your best, assess what is true for you. Look at how you devote your time. Sometimes, it’s necessary to look at your friendships and time with relatives. I guide my clients to ask, “Does this strengthen me?”
A relative who consistently belittles you is not helping! Limit your exposure to that person.
Here’s another important point. Take care to develop what makes YOU happy. In one of my favorite videos I made [CLICK HERE for the video “How to Believe in Yourself When Others Don’t], I said, “Measure by your heart, not their approval.”
How are you making sure to guard your personal strength?
In summary, become skillful about how you deal with fear. Real joy and fulfillment are outside your comfort zone.
Focus on what’s most important to you. Take action to fulfill your personal values. I shared that my values include Love, Freedom, Creativity and Contribution.
What are your Four Top Values?
How will you make daily progress?
My friend, the best to you on your journey.
Spoken Word Strategist
YourBodySoulandProsperity.com (visitors from 98 countries)
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