Fear gets to the best of us, whether it is fear of failure, fear of success or even fear of fear. All of us have experienced fear at some point in our lives and it can be a real stumbling block that holds us back from being truly successful. Fear can’t hold you back forever, if you don’t let it. There are several ways to overcome fear, here are my top 8.
1. SEPARATE REALITY FROM PERCEPTION
Ask yourself what is really going on, locate the facts and place them over your feelings. Have you ever had a similar problem you tackled with successfully? Who can you count on to support you in the difficulty you are having? Try to examine your fear after considering all these. Is your fear really that fearful or you are so worried at the moment that you clean forgot about the strategies you had earlier for a similar problem.
2. IDENTIFY THE TRIGGER
Figure out what it is in a situation that triggers you. Learning to identify it will help you learn to combat it.
3. KNOW WHERE FEAR LIVES IN YOUR BODY
A lot of times, fear takes over physically. It affects different people different ways. Identify if/how it affects your physical body and do the work to take care of your body. Ex: if you hold stress in your back, you can learn stretches, foam rolling, etc. to avoid the pain.
4. PRACTICE GRATITUDE
Everyday, list out 1-3 things you are thankful for. It doesn’t matter how big or small it is, gratitude helps shift the mind into a positive light, which overtime, overcomes fear.
5. LISTEN TO YOUR INNER VOICE
Monitor your inner conversations. If you wouldn’t say it to a friend, don’t say it to yourself. Speak positively to yourself and remind yourself of your strengths.
6. CREATE A NEW ASSOCIATION
Remind yourself that the feeling and the moment will pass. Focus on the positive outcome of the situation, rather than the scary in between.
7. LOOK AT THE GLASS HALF FULL
Perception is a very powerful thing, and how you feel about your situation dictates how you respond. So think positively and you’ll give yourself a much better chance of success. This won’t happen overnight; practice with just one thought. What is one recurring negative/fearful thought you have? Work on reversing this one thought. Overtime, this will become a habit.
8. PRACTICE BREATHING EXERCISES
It is common sense, really, but all the more beneficial. Breathing helps center your body; when you stop breathing, your heart stops beating. Box breathing, also known as four-square breathing, which is the following:
- Breathe in counting to four slowly. Feel the air enter your lungs. Imagine that you are walking on one side of a box. You reach the top of the box when you reach four.
- Hold your breath for 4 seconds. Try to avoid inhaling or exhaling for 4 seconds. Imagine that you are walking to the other side of the box.
- Slowly exhale through your mouth for 4 seconds.
- Repeat steps 1 to 3 until you feel re-centered.
Breathe in through the nose so that the air could get deep into the lungs, this way slows down the pace of your beathing and it stimulates the pneumogastric, which has a beneficial effect on heart rhythm, digestion and the parasympathetic nervous system.
Of course, there are many more methods to help us keep away our fears and foster the development and maintenance of positive thinking. It is worthwhile to tra the 8 methods discussed above and build a habit of them so that fear could not haunt you anymore.