What is your biggest fear? Fear is an inevitable part of life and it reveals itself in countless ways. One of the most common fears is the fear of heights. So many people can’t stand the thought of climbing a tree much less climbing a mountain or flying in a plane! In relationships, many people fear rejection. They get extremely nervous around others and feel uneasy about developing emotional connections. And in reference to taking risks in just about any and every area, there are so many people who are afraid of failure. They would rather not take a chance on something that isn’t guaranteed and therefore miss out on so many amazing opportunities! Whatever your fear may be, it is first and foremost important to realize that having fears is normal. Everyone has them, even the most powerful and influential leaders alive today. The key is to dominate your fears rather than allow your fears to dominate you! Don’t allow your fears to have so much influence over you that they prevent you from taking necessary action. Instead, follow these three key steps to overcome them:
Face your fears. The more you avoid dealing with your fears, the more power you are giving to them. In order to overcome them, you are going to have to identify exactly what they are, where they came from, and then approach them head-on. You can’t win a battle that you never fight. And as intimidating as it may seem at first, this decision has to be made in order to live a fearless life.
Change your thinking. Every fear stems from a thought. The thought triggers a negative emotion and together they start a complex, interwoven dance in your mind. The good news, figuratively speaking, is that you can change both the music played and the dance moves that are made! Read books that will inspire you to take risks and try thinking more positive thoughts such as, “I can do this!” or “I’ll never know unless I try.” Personally, there have been several times I’ve overcome fears by thinking to myself, “What’s the worst that could happen?” Usually, when I put things in that perspective, the risk doesn’t seem as threatening. That’s because even if the outcome isn’t what I expected, there is always something to be gained. I love Thomas Edison’s quote, which states, “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” Now there’s a mindset we should all adopt!
Develop an uncomfortable lifestyle. While I know this doesn’t sound appealing, what I mean is that you were not meant to live in your comfort zone. You were meant to push your own limits and experience the amazing satisfaction that comes from doing so. Even Jesus challenged his disciple to step out of the boat and walk on water! Just start somewhere. Right where you are. There is no time like the present and the small steps you start taking out of your comfort zone today will lead to victory over your fears tomorrow.
You are capable of doing so much more than you think you can do. So don’t let fear get in the way of living up to your fullest potential. You are an overcomer!