We are creatures of habit. Nothing shocks us back to life like something new. Buy a new car, you will drive with pride and slowly upgrade your wardrobe, too. Find new love and you will come alive. Everything is more vibrant when you journey through the life and heart of your new lover. How would you ever get to experience true love if you were too afraid to open your heart? The truth is that this one experience might be the oasis in the midst of ten other failed attempts at finding love, but you would never get what you want it you never take a step towards it. You will always miss 100% of the shots you do not take.
You have to be intentional about overcoming defeat and failures. They don’t just lay down. They don’t roll over and play dead. They are formidable barriers that you must conquer, if you are to experience the best of each event in your life. You may want to start a business. You’re fired up. Your family? Not so much. This is because they know that this would actually be the Spectacular Grand Opening Event Of Business #6! You’ve failed 5 times before. You look up and you could see a dark cloud, loop the replay reel of each failed attempt, looming over your head.
You’ve got to have something stronger to combat such a clingy reminder of those negative possibilities. How do you possibly overcome your nagging fears and doubts? These are a few things I do to help me through fearful moments.
1 Find a success – Your fears are only as strong as you make them. It’s usually a clear indication that there is little confidence in the area of your life where you have doubts. Having a story or even a living example of what could go right, goes a long way to inspire you. Find or even discuss your fears with a person who has already overcome your fear. Example: You labor over an obsession. A crush. You’re afraid to tell your friend that you are attracted to them romantically. A friend who’s been through the same thing tells you, “Stop giving her subtle hints. The volume knob is too low. She can’t hear you. Just tell her. Let the chips fall where they may.” (For those of you who are actually in this boat…this one’s for free. Thank me later)
2 Affirm your desires – The negative What If’s stories are inconsiderate. They fill our minds with terrifying outcomes (none of which are even real) that bombard our brains, forcing us to forget the very reason we want to try something new, in the first place. Repeat and focus in on the original reason you decided to take the step. Example: You are afraid to ask your boss for an overdue raise. Instead of thinking how intimidating he is, focus on why you needed the raise in the first place: to actually afford the rent you have to pay each month.
3 Affirm the possibilities – The voice in your head that is loudest is the voice you will choose to obey. you can either focus on the negative outcomes and psych yourself out of your defining last stand or you could focus on what could go right, helping you to become more confident that outcome will better than worse. Example: Sometimes I have to make appearances and events where there are more spectators and peacocks than down-to-earth human beings. I literally repeat this affirmation, “There’s someone in here who will affect my life in a positive way.” It helps me to keep my attention in the right place.
4 Create tiny results immediately – Baby steps can also be great confidence boosters. Give yourself an accomplishment as soon as possible to get some belief under your belt. Example: You might not be able to run a mile. Start with a city block. With that undeniable proof of progress, you can attack two, then three, until you have enough stamina for the whole mile.
Do you want to break the cycle of mediocrity in your life? Then stop letting what you’ve been through determine what you go through. Take a stand today and execute your fears away.