H2H – Time to take action
You’ve done it!
We started this journey looking at the CAUSE of what was holding you back and how it’s IMPACTING your life. Understanding this, we freed ourselves to see the POSSIBILITIES of what you want – happiness!
Now we have the pieces, we can put it into place. Congrats for doing the hard work so far, it’s not easy but I’m thrilled you’re so close to getting the rewards you deserve.
Month four is about TAKING ACTION, setting those goals, creating those plans and building a great rewards system to keep yourself motivated. Throughout the month, I will be sharing tips and tools on how to do exactly that. What’s the point of putting all this effort in if we don’t address the biggest thing that gets in the way of people achieving what they want?
Acknowledge the fear
Whether it’s fear of failure, rejection, judgement or not being good enough, fear is very common, especially when there are so many unknowns in the world. If we allow it, fear has the power to keep you locked in a life of comfort and predictability. Where you will never reach your potential, staying in that comfort bubble rather than stepping towards the fear and the unknown.
You find yourself stuck between being scared to try and frustrated with where you are. What do you do? If fear is in control, then nothing. Fear can drive us away from what we want.
This fear is infectious and soon we can find ourselves living in a bubble of fear, where stress and anxiety are running your life. You find yourself constantly thinking about stuff that worries you. When we do this, we don’t leave any space in our minds to think of a solution. We feel trapped which reinforces the fear. Most importantly, we don’t leave any room for the good stuff.
What is fear?
First understand that fear is a natural part of our psychology. It harps back to the primitive days when we lived in wild, extreme environments and hunted for food to survive. Fear is a survival mechanism that we all have; it signals a threat and keeps us safe. I’m sure you will be familiar with the fight, flight and freeze responses, our intrinsic response. In today’s world, this response can become overpowering and over sensitive as we have way more stimulus to consider. In addition, excessive fear over time can become chronic.
Chronic fear is when the fear response has become all-encompassing and influences everything you do, think about and feel. It’s like a self-perpetuating loop: the more you fear, the more afraid you become. If you feel you are reaching this stage or you recognise that irrational fears are taking over your life, I would advise you to seek support. You can always reach out to us here.
What can I do about it?
The honest truth is fear will always be there. However, this is only our initial rush of cortisol and will only last for a few seconds. After this immediate reaction, you can influence and control the continued response. In my video next week, I will share some techniques to help you manage your feelings in the moment. To recondition your brain to respond differently, here are a few pointers to consider:
1. It starts by understanding what is really causing the fear (this can show up in many ways, stress, anxiety, frustration, anger to name a few). Here’s a wee exercise that might help with this. Write down a brain dump of all the fears in your head, no matter how trivial. Highlight the ones that are real right now (loosing your job, finance issues, home schooling and COVID-19). List a few realistic things you can do to manage and prevent these fears. Now highlight the irrational, catastrophic ones (a zombie apocalypse, conspiracy theories, invasion of locus – you get the idea!). It may seem obvious but rationalise these are unlikely to happen. Once you identify the thought that is causing the fear, rewrite the story and change the thought.
2. Take 100% responsibility for what is causing your continued response to the fear. This is you. Understand that you have a choice to take back power over your responses. You can blame the outside fires for your emotions and stay feeling out of control and ruled by fear. Or you can take responsibility, take charge of your inner sparks and stop living in the fear.
This can be a difficult step as you want to blame circumstances or other people. Your situation might be difficult but these are things that you can only influence not control. However, the way you respond to all of these things is something you can control.
3. Stop the excuses. Excuses are defence mechanisms we use to avoid dealing with our issues. Excuses are like a comfort blanket when you are living in the fear bubble. It may give you a short-term sense of comfort but it also keeps you wrapped in fear.
4. Decide and commit to respond differently. Don’t give yourself a choice, make it a must. The difference with successful people is in how they respond to their fears. They recognise that the real fear is not achieving what they want. Their fear becomes settling for a lesser life so they use this fear to motivate them. They succeed in what they want. You can too.
5. Learn how to deal with challenges and disappointment. You get back up and keep going. You learn from the hard experiences, how to be comfortable being uncomfortable. Accept that you might fail (and will sometimes) – it’s just part of the process. Embrace it and use it to learn and grow.
6. Be kind to yourself and understand the power of a positive mindset. You can only experience one emotion at any given time so don’t allow space for the fear and negativity. Fill your head with positive thoughts.
7. Live in the moment, if you are only thinking and experiencing what is happening in the now, then this is the only experience you will feel. When you are in the moment, what happened before or could happen in the future has no effect on us. This is why mindfulness is such a great practice.
Moving forward with fear
Remember fear will always be present in our lives and we never really know when it’s going to show up or potentially stop us from achieving our goals.
We can learn how to respond to and use the fear to our advantage. It won’t feel easy or comfortable when you feel the fear and choose to moving forward. However, the reward at the end when you reach even the tiniest milestone will feel incredible. It does get easier with time and practice so keep on going.
You will succeed. You will find happiness.
It’s already there.
Until next time
Stay with it, Mary.