Today we look at what is terrorising our lives: fears. Most of us didn’t conquer our fears (yet) and it causes so many troubles, setbacks and worries. We live in the shadows of our own self, petrified in our own fears.
The closer I look at my fears, the more I see how much they have been impacting my life negatively. I want to take an opportunity to dive into the fundamentals fears and how to deal with them. As well as sharing a game plan to beat our fears. I started these research for myself but I hope that by sharing it here, it will help someone else! Most of the content below is usually found in Tony Robbins‘ audios and seminars, it was whether from himself or some of his coaches.
In a moment, we will go through each fundamental fear and explain what they are but also what to do about each of them.
The 5 Fundamentals Fears
Fear: Of Lacking
The fear of lack tends to generate the lack we are afraid of. It is keeping us in a situation of scarcity, it is keeping us wanting more and creating not enough while we crave for more. In relationships, we often are afraid of not being loved the way we want so we try to control our partner “to make it happen”. Our controly behaviours are hurting our partners and our relationships and we do not get the love we want that way.
One way out is focusing on the opposite of lack: abundance. We all have the abundance of something in our lives, but to see it, we must shift our focus. We could have plenty of love through our friends; we could have plenty of money through our professional success or it could be of sources of growth through our life’s challenges.
Fear: Of Being Rejected
This fear is one of the most powerful in the sense that so many of us do not act in life because of it.
Often being rejected means being criticised. This prevents so many people from success as when we start to be successful, we will be criticised. Sometimes we have haters but sometimes our loved ones aren’t believing in us. They feel we are wrong and they let us know as they worry for us.
When we see that others aren’t accepting of us, we do not dare. We stop following our dreams, we stop creating the life we want. We focus on fitting in a box we were put it and we please other, so we can be “accepted”. An acceptance that isn’t true, as we aren’t who we are and who we want to be when we fear to be rejected.
Success, whatever that means to you, will come with criticisms. We need to learn how to live with criticisms as it shouldn’t stop us to grow, dream and take action. Instead of focusing on the criticism, we should focus on our success and move forward.
Fear: Of Winning
Did you ever catch yourself sabotaging a situation at the very last minute?
This fear come to our lives as self-sabotage. As it is common in the workplace let’s look at an example: we are ready to get the next promotion or ready to close that deal with an important client and we screw it up at the last minute.
When we repeat this a few times, we can create a limiting belief that it is too good to be true for us so we stop trying.
One way to move forward is to tell ourselves that we are worthy. Slowly, we can create the belief that we are worthy (because we are!). We are all worthy of what we want. We just need to dare to go for it and on the finish line, claim it.
Fear: Of Loosing
I’ve seen that one in relationships often! We are afraid to lose our partners and that fear becomes an obsession. As we focus on the loss, guess what? We create the famous “self full-filling prophecy”. It is hard to make efforts in a relationship when we are scared to lose our partner. It leaves space for the little voice in our head that will discourage us to take any action to save that relationship, as we see it already lost. Slowly, we are creating what we feared the most, a meaningless relationship. A loveless relationship. A void that we cannot fill anymore and we start to believe that our fears are a truth.
The fear of losing can be fought with a belief, the belief that no matter what, we will be able to make it and that everything will be okay (mostly).
Fear: of Being Not Good Enough
The last one but not the least, probably the most common for me. Not being good enough is paralyzing, it pushes so many of us into a freezing state. We stay in our comfort zone and our lives aren’t changing nor evolving. Another way of looking that the consequences of that fear are that we keep doing the same thing, over and over. As Albert Einstein said:
“Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results.”
We can beat the fear of not being enough by fueling ourselves of our dreams. We must keep learning, keep growing, keep moving and find people that are certain, so we can surround ourselves with them.
The 5 Tips to take control over Fear
Fears are often defeating our ambitions and missions in life. I’ve searched for a few ways to take control over my fears and that 5 tips or steps process from Tony Robbins’ blog seems simple, powerful and something I identify with.
First: Determine if your Goal is a Must
Most of us have goals or dreams but we just think about them. What do I mean by that? They are a vague destination and they might not be transportation to be reaching them. They aren’t a MUST for us. They are nice to have, they make us happy when we think about them. But they make us sad and guilty when we found ourselves doing nothing to achieve them. How do you know if your goal is a must? A simple question might help: What would be the price for not overcoming that fear?
“The path to success is to take massive, determined action.” Tony Robbins
Second: Recognize The Excuses
“I am tired today, I’ll do it tomorrow”
“I’m not in the mood right now, let me chill online for a bit“
“I really can’t afford, it is just too expensive”
These excuses may be the reason for our non-action. Most of us in some areas of our lives have these excuses every single day. That could be okay when the area is actually not important to us but what if it is happening to our dreams?
To move past these, I try to remember moments in my life where I felt I couldn’t do it, when I felt weak and tired but I pulled it off, I made it. Lately, I’m trying to capture these moments when I go to my CrossFit classes.
At times, I arrive and I don’t feel like pushing myself, I am in my head focusing on why I can’t push my self. After all, I didn’t sleep that well, didn’t have food for hours and the day at work was stressful so I probably can’t push my self at all, I’ll take it easy for today and see next time if I can do better… Do you do that too? 🙂
Some days I give up to these thoughts but also some days I can push myself, I can lift heavier, I can do more reps and I can have less rest. It’s important to capture these moments so slowly, it will be easier to push ourselves more consistently.
Excuses are in the realm of safety and comfort. While they make us feel guilty or lazy, it seems definitely more comfortable than going out of our comfort zone. Otherwise, we wouldn’t dwell that much and take our excuses for truth! Take a mental note each time you say an excuse to yourself, or make a written list of them. You will see your own patterns and slowly you might find yourself being able to push beyond these excuses.
Third: Adopt a Growth Mindset
While it may be true that most of our dreams and goals aren’t reachable with our current skillsets, people who achieve them are growing. They grow every day. They read, they listen, they practice and they reflect. That’s the reason I started that blog! Life is a continuous journey of learning and I don’t plan to stop until I die.
“Without continual growth and progress, such words as improvement, achievement, and success have no meaning.” Benjamin Franklin
Forth: Let Pain Brings Valuable Insight
If we find ourselves hurt or if we are going in the wrong direction, we can still see these as progress. For example, we learn about what pain we do not want to tolerate anymore in our lives. We are built to change and adapt so let’s embrace it. Let’s learn from our pains and mistakes. Let’s grow, let’s foster growth and let’s shine.
Fifth: Know that Failure is Inevitable
As a perfectionist, I am fearful of failure. I tend to look at others that are successful and I compare myself to them. Guess what? It doesn’t often turn into my favour… If ever. I feel wrong, I feel stupid, I feel not enough. It is simply because it is an unfair comparison. I forgot to look at how many times these successful people failed before they become successful. Most of the successful people I admire failed hundreds of times and they kept going and that is where the difference is sometimes. We should remind ourselves that: I’ll fail, you’ll fail and we’ll be okay.
As we touch on being a Perfectionist, I’d like to plug this School of Life video: the Perfectionist Trap.You’ll learn a lot about accepting failure but also about putting success in perspective.
It concludes our article for today. I hope it brought to you as much value as it did to me. While I am still a beginner at managing my fear, explaining my findings here have been a great help to me already. I’ve been modifying this article over and over to try to be clearer and make more sense. We cannot live a life of fears. It is saddening to think that I often do that and that so many other people do too. Be brave, use working tools and let’s take control over our lives. Peace.
I have one last thing for you about fear, I’d suggest you give a shot at one of Tim Ferris’ Ted Talk as it is bringing an interesting way to handle our fears and I didn’t cover that in today’s blog. Enjoy!