Fear is one of the biggest things that holds people back. There can be danger in going for that which you dream about.
- What if you fail?
- What if you succeed?
- What if it isn’t all you expected?
In my world, it’s fear of making mistakes. The mental and emotional toll I provide for myself when things don’t work out just right is daunting. This comes from years of “you’re better than that” or “didn’t you stop to think?” or “even a monkey could do that.”
It’s not fun inside my head, but I keep going and trying … and crying. And on the other side I shake and wonder how I made it through, then do a little kid dance of WOO-HOO!
Fear as a Motivator
For some people fear is a great motivator. For others it is a demotivator. It is the single most powerful wall anyone could possibly build within their mind.
For the rebels, fear is what needs to be conquered. They see the wall and say, “Screw it! I’m going to climb it!” These daredevils are seen throughout history pushing the envelope on business, sports, and life. Some make great strides and some become object lessons.
For those that tow the line, fear is the wall that holds them back. It is what binds their hands and feet. They see something exciting they want, and the shackles appear. The figurative rope around the body constricts saying, “NO! It’s too dangerous.” These are the people you never hear of…or they are the ones who people say, “They had so much potential, why did they never use it?”
What is it really?
They say that FEAR is False Evidence Appearing Real. What I’ve come to learn is that the false evidence wasn’t always false. If there’s evidence, it’s there and true. The question becomes, is it true NOW? It was true once, but it may not be true today.
What was true when you were 5-years old does not necessarily mean it’s true when you’re 30. You have grown. You have gained experience. You have moved from chalk and crayons to pens and computers.
When you encounter fear, take a moment to look around you and observe your environment. Ask yourself:
- Is this fear one you’re familiar with?
- How long has it been with you?
- Is the experience you’re having now the same as it was back then?
- What is different now?
- What is the same?
The fear that was instilled in you all those years ago was there for a reason AND that reason may not be applicable today.
Give yourself the opportunity to assess the situation, honor the protective urge within you (fear), and move forward in whichever manner you choose with conviction.
Fear gives you the opportunity to see any possible dangers along the way. It is up to you, as an adult, to determine if those “dangers” are valid for your current situation or if they were stories from long ago, handed down from generation to generation, that you never bothered to question.
By recognizing the stories and fears that have been handed down to you through life, seeing them for what they are, you can start to work on consciously accepting, changing, or discarding them so that you can go for your BIG DREAMS without being held back by fear.
To help you recognize the stories you hold, I’ve created a free download called Finding Your Stories. This PDF provides prompts to help you discover where your fear stories originate.
It is possible to change your perspective and fear response. It is possible to go for your dreams and achieve them. It just takes a little effort. You’ve got this!