Fear is the single most emotion which has the potential to completely destroy us. This emotion has the power to over ride our abilities, cause a mental catastrophe which can actually bring these negative thoughts to life. This emotion can inhibit our progress and become the single most-greatest obstacle in our way to success. Fear is our bodies immediate response to threat and is processed in two ways- Physical reaction and emotional reaction. The former is when we resort to either the flight or fight response which is where we either get ready to attack in defense or ready to flee. In case of the latter, the emotional reaction, is the larger concern which forms the crux of all our present day problems and is also the tricky one. Here our mind begins to perceive a certain situation, person, thing or anything outside of us as a threat and immediately resorts to avoidance or attack mechanism. Our minds perception of 99 out of 100 cases is actually only imagined threat and not really a threat. This perception is the result of a persons conditioning over the years involving childhood, traumatic experiences, adulthood or such other causes or circumstances where the mind apes someone’s conditioning like that of our mentors or parents or we develop them through our life’s experiences over the years.
The physical reaction of flight or fight was something of use to our ancestors when civilization didn’t really exist. It came handy when we were attacked by predators or faced natural calamities. But now, we have different kinds of threats which become FEAR in our minds, namely the fear of loss, fear of insecurity, fear of death, fear of failure, fear of defeat etc. Infact every action that we take in our life today emanates from one kind of fear or another. For example, we never live in the present, we either fear the past experiences and therefore work on ensuring our lives in the future are better or work on fixing the present due to this fear of past. This fear inhibits us in the present. We work hard and double our investments and triple our wealth due to the fear of ‘What if’ or the so called unknown circumstances in the future. Most of our decisions are based on one kind of fear or another.
‘To every problem, there is a solution’ and so there is one to fear as well. Fear causes chemical reactions in our body like precipitation, adrenaline rush, concussion, dizziness, increase in blood pressure and such other reactions which cause some kind of an upheaval in our system. It is actually very easy, to read these symptoms and understand that you are in a state of fear. The point being ‘Awareness’ of the problem is the first big step in eradicating the problem. Reading these symptoms like a barometer is the first step in cutting fear at its roots. The first go to thing to do is develop awareness. The next time you act out of fear, try and note what reactions or changes are taking place in your body. Note them, by observing them and do nothing else.
Step two is develop calmness and learn to deal with the triggers of fear. Easy said than done, developing calmness in a demanding situation is rather difficult but not impossible. I use methods of meditation, counting numbers in my mind and focusing on my inhalation and exhalation till I have calmed down. Step three is to make an informed decision after having accomplished step one and two. This means after having become aware of your fear, calmed down the tension and the resulting symptoms, make a decision which is based on logical and rational thinking and not some wreck less emotion of fear.
‘We all feel the fear, but the brave feel the fear and do it anyway.’ This is step four. You must take a step in fixing your fear. This is taking step three and putting into action. The informed decision must now be executed and to do this, do away with procrastination, apprehension and all kind of rumination. Simply act and get it done. I have been using these four-step action plan in combating fears deep and strong. I have coached many clients in shaping their life in a way where they have overcome their greatest foes or phobias and asserted their will to achieve the ultimate goal. You too can and I am sure you will if you put this four step action plan into action. Remember the only difference between the brave and the coward is- the coward feels the fear, but the brave feels the fear and does what needs to be done! Make a choice to eradicate that fear which has been inhibiting your progress for eons. Get rid of those negative thoughts, feelings of anxiety, stress and tension. Become aware, calm down and face the fear bravely, come up with a logical action plan and finally execute the plan without a minutes delay. This way, you shall defeat the greatest foe which mankind has ever faced- FEAR!
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