Fear

September 14, 2010

Fear is in the mind of the beholder… but that doesn’t stop it.

Whether or not I try, I am afraid of things… mostly things I feel I cannot control: I am afraid of failure. I am afraid of not being good enough. I am afraid of the unknown. I am afraid of taking risks. Heck, I’m afraid of not wearing the right outfit. (Internal) fear is only what you, or I, make it out to be.

Since starting CrossFit, I have been faced with taking risks, the unknown, and pushing myself. Since starting my new business in direct sales, I have also faced fear; fear of rejection, fear of failure, fear of commitment, even fear of success. And what all of these fears (or factors) have in common, the connecting force that drives them to become fears: myself.

For a few weeks now I have been faced, daily, with my own fears. I have had to make, or at least face, some life-changing decisions, lately. Whether or not they are the right decision is one thing, but actually having to choose is hard. Why? Let’s just say I’m not the most decisive person… “what should I have for breakfast today????” (yes, that’s me.)

But lately, I have been trying to push myself out of my comfort zone, my safe place, and into the unknown, where the fear lies. Taking risks, pushing ones self, and doing what is hard, is the only way to grow, right? But how do we get to that growth stage?

I don’t want to run away from opportunity anymore. I want to jump out and take it. I want to push myself beyond what is comfortable. The other day, when talking to my Mom, the wise woman she is, about taking risks and fear and such, she put things into perspective: “Tell yourself you can do it, and you can. You told yourself you could run a marathon, and you did. You told yourself you wanted to x, y, z in fitness and you did. Why stop there? You can do anything you put your mind to.”

Thanks, Mom! Always there with words of wisdom, even if I already knew them, it helps being reminded.

Here are some ideas and tips out there, that I will and should follow, to help overcome internal fears:

  • Avoid using dis-empowering words. For example “I Can’t”, “What if”, or “Why Me”… Instead, use “How can I” to train your mind to be solution driven.
  • Be aware when comparing yourself to others. We all have our own unique set of abilities and likes. Harness these and use them to avoid unrealistic comparisons.
  • We learn by experience, so if something we have tried in the past failed, we tend to avoid this failure again. In some situations, you may need to let go of this past and try again. Take control of your fear instead of letting it control this part of your life.
  • Look at a stressful situation or a fearful situation as an opportunity to learn something new or gain a brand new experience.
  • Write down the “fear” you want to accomplish and the plans to achieve this goal. Organize and prioritize the tasks/plans to prevent yourself from facing fear of loss or failure.
  • Create momentum and motivation to see your gaining results. Set daily, weekly, and monthly challenges to gain these results.
  • Free yourself from your comfort zone. Do this in any way you can. Small steps bring big rewards.
  • Don’t give up. The only time people fail is when they give up. The winners learn from their mistakes.
  • Get out there and challenge yourself.

My challenge for myself is to put these ideas and tips into action. I’m working on my goals, putting up the plans to achieve them, and challenging myself to actually DO them. Fear, I will conquer you!

Maybe I need more yoga in my life…

Fear is a stepping off point for the unknown, good, bad, growth, strength, the future. For those who are especially being faced with fear right now, my thoughts are with you. You know who you are.

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Q&A:

What fear(s) drives you?

Do you let fear drive you or your decisions?

What do you do to combat fear? Any and all tips are welcomed. 😉

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{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Pure2raw twins September 15, 2010 at 8:01 AM

oh gosh where do I begin…FEAR…we are just the same girl. I am so indecisive, it drives Lori crazy. We understand you fear of starting up your own business…and it really never gets easier. I like your tips, I am going to use them too if that is okay ; ) I used to be good at doing new things, but lately I feel I am stuck…not sure what exactly, but finally making some big decisions, and it feels good. Scary, yes, but trying not to let fear hold me back ; )
.-= Pure2raw twins´s last blog ..B – S spread =-.

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kelsey@snackingsquirrel.com September 15, 2010 at 7:54 AM

of course im gonna add a cliche in by saying that the quote “theres nothing to fear but fear itself” is so true! we all deal with fear although at times the fear is intensified for some when things like anxiety come in to mix. fear is a wall thats up for a reason, a test to see if we can break through. my mom used to always tell me that if i sit on the safe side of the wall, i may feel better but i’ll always look at it and wonder whats on the other side. maybe i will put my ear to it and see if i can figure out if its safe or not.. or i’ll try to climb it. None of these will help unless i break through and risk the comfort ive made for a life that could be better. and if i do face ‘fear’ and break down its walls but i dont like whats on the otherside, i can choose to re-build that barrier and stay back in my comfort zone.. or possibly take on the other walls that lay beyond the ones i break through. interesting metaphor, but pretty true!

XOXO <3

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Sarah @Gluten-free tries Vegan September 14, 2010 at 10:54 PM

What a great post! I am full of fear. Mostly in the form of “what ifs”, meeting expectations and pressuring myself to do well. Every day I think “what if I don’t do well in this essay, this exam, this test” and it’s exhausting. I’m afraid of failing and regret that I didn’t try harder – in relation to my nursing course. I’m stuck as I find the academic nursing side thoroughly boring so can’t motivate myself to work at it but then I’m afraid of failing this part of my course! Doh.

All the best with overcoming your fears, you’re inspirational 🙂
.-= Sarah @Gluten-free tries Vegan´s last blog ..USA Trip – Part 2 and Thanks =-.

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Ela September 14, 2010 at 7:19 PM

Thank you so much for this post – truly inspirational and potentially empowering. I read the ‘tips’ to my husband and he said ‘print that out!’

I love it when connecting with other bloggers starts to feel serendipitous – a web of people trying to do their very best and pouring out their souls to share with everyone and help others do the same.

Sincere thanks again!
love
Ela
.-= Ela´s last blog ..We Didnt Go Across the Bay – Self Love and Finding Joy – How To Lose A Pipe – Amazing Grass Giveaway Winner =-.

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Michelle@ Housewife in the Raw September 14, 2010 at 3:33 PM

What a well written post. And what a tough topic. I fear mediocrity and apathy – like I’ll look back some day and wonder what I have to show for my life and what, if any, impact I’ve had on the greater good.
.-= Michelle@ Housewife in the Raw´s last blog ..Zucchini Flatbread – Take Two =-.

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Katie September 14, 2010 at 1:46 PM

Great post Lori – and very well-written.

I think everyone struggle with fear of the unknown. I just try to look at it as an opportunity for success…it doesn’t always work, but I always try.
.-= Katie´s last blog ..Chocolate Sauce Remix =-.

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Jason September 14, 2010 at 11:19 AM

I designed a game called Rejection Therapy back in 2009 to encourage myself to get out of my comfort zone more. It was amazingly effective and enlightening (for as long as I did it).

If anyone wants to try it, it’s here: http://rejectiontherapy.com

It’s not finished, it’s very stripped down, but it works.

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