Fear is a common thread that runs through everyone’s life. Be it the fear of failure, rejection, or not being enough, fear is a powerful force that can prevent you from reaching your full potential. Fear can trap you and make you feel imprisoned, leading to unfulfilled feelings because you are afraid to pursue anything.
The crazy thing is that you can use fear as a tool to achieve greatness. It can help you experience a breakthrough and find fulfillment in life, if you allow it. This can happen when you think of fear as a problem that you need to fix, as opposed to ignoring it. Sure, it’s easier to ignore the problem, but how do you benefit from that? If your sink was clogged, would you ignore it or call a plumber, or fix it yourself? Don’t let your fear interfere with your life because it will try to get in the way of your greatness.
The Types Of Fear
In order to stop living in fear, you have to understand the underlying psychology. Fear and anxiety have their place in a healthy human being. Acute fear is a regular emotion that signals a sense of danger or a threat to your emotional or physical safety. It heightens your awareness and allows you to act quickly in order to save yourself or others. Acute fear can help you survive.
Chronic fear or indirect fear, on the other hand, occurs when acute fear becomes hyper-sensitive. This type of fear occurs when the body is exposed to low-level, stressful events. The news about the current state of the world, for example, may cause you to irrationally anticipate negative events. That chronic fear that brews can actually lower your natural life-saving response and make you think that an outside force has to come to the rescue.
You don’t experience anxiety with chronic fear: you live in it. Chronic fear can influence what you do, how you think, or what you say. It can keep you on a hamster wheel of never-ending defeat and frustration, but you have the power to get off. You don’t have to let fear control you, especially when you use the following strategies to overcome it.
Learn About Your Fear
This is often the hardest step, but it’s necessary. In order to overcome the fear that hides in your subconscious, you have to confront it. When you face it head on, instead of running from it, you notice things that you didn’t realize before. Being aware of your fear can help you overcome it. Try to keep a journal for two to three weeks and write down patterns that you notice. Do your hands clam up when you read a news story? Does anxiety present itself in the evening? Write down anything that is significant!
Use Your Brain Differently
Fear and anxiety come from a certain part of the brain, allowing emotion to intimidate rational thought. When you begin to feel the fearful symptoms, try to use a different part of the brain. Think about your anxiety or fear in terms of numbers. Is your anxiousness a 4 on a scale of 1-10? Stop and analyze your feelings and recognize where your fear is at. At this point, you can work on lowering it via the next step.
Focus On Your Breath
Breathing exercises can be quite beneficial in reducing stress, calming the body, and relieving anxiety. One of the telltale signs of anxiety is short breaths, which can cause other negative reactions that can escalate into an anxiety attack. Once you recognize the symptoms of fear or anxiety, stop what you are doing and focus on your breathing, which is not a complicated process. Follow your breath, in and out, making sure your exhale is longer than your inhale. Deep breathing actually forces your body to calm itself. You can click here to learn more about deep breathing.
Adopt A Growth Mindset
It’s common for people to give up on what they want, primarily because they think their goals are beyond their reach. This perpetuates fear and makes it difficult to settle into life. If something is unattainable, why bother? This is the wrong mindset to live by, but it’s right to adapt a growth mindset. This helps adjust the way of thinking, switching to an attitude of hard work, new strategies, and figuring out solutions. There’s no need to give up when things get difficult because it’s possible to adapt and work harder to achieve greatness.
In addition to the aforementioned habits, it’s beneficial to practice self-care. There’s a link between your mental, emotional, and physical health. Many self-care habits can help reduce feelings of anxiety and depression, and may even help you feel better about yourself. Consider mindful meditation, regular massages, and eliminating alcohol or caffeine from your diet. Small changes, coupled with psychological strategies, can decrease your feelings of anxiety and keep you from living in fear.