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Fear: A Self Imposed Prison And How To Overcome It

If you suffer from anxiety or phobias, you perception of danger keeps you from facing those things causing your anxiety. This keeps you in a prison of your own making. If you are in a job that you do not find satisfying, do not like doing, or does not meet your needs, fear of the unknown (or failure or success) keeps you from taking the steps to change your job or career. If you are living somewhere you do not like, fear of the unknown keeps you from exploring other places to live that might be more to your liking. If you are in a bad relationship, fear of being alone or the unknown keeps you from ending that relationship in order to make room for other options.

If you fear dealing with an issue or truly experiencing your emotions, you avoid them with some self-destructive behavior rather than work through the issue. Fear of conflict keeps us from being honest with others and keeps us from resolving our issues with others. The result is that our needs our not being met. In order to live the life you really want, you need to face and other overcome what you fear.

Overcoming Fear

It is important to recognize that fear is one of many emotions we experience. The type of fear that keeps us imprisoned is based on what might happen at some future time. “I might fail. I might look stupid. I might be rejected.” When something we fear is avoided it will increase the amount of control this emotion has over our actions and our lives. The longer we avoid doing something, the more fear we have of doing it. This avoidance has a negative effect on self esteem and can also affect other parts of our lives. Avoiding the things we fear can be based on a belief of not being good enough…this is simply not true. There can be a snowball effect further inhibiting our ability to have a full and rewarding life. Therefore, the first step in overcoming a fear is to recognize that it is just a feeling and based on some imagined threat.

The second step is to challenge the validity of the fear and what real harm if any would result in facing what we fear. We tend to think of the worst possible outcome. That is highly unlikely to happen. Focusing on how facing the things you fear might improve your life or enable you to reach your goals is extremely helpful. For example: If you have social anxiety, introducing yourself to someone you are attracted to would give you the opportunity to know that person. Allowing your fears to control your behavior will be another missed opportunity to have what you want in your life.

Finally, avoid as much of the anticipator fear as possible. When you are facing the thing you fear, acknowledge and even embrace your fear. It is normal to experience some anxiety when doing something for the first time or something we believe to have risks. Trying to repress or ignore an emotion can increase its intensity. Be in the moment and do not judge your feelings. The more often you engage in an activity you fear, the less anxiety provoking it will become.

We are all capable of accomplishing so much more than we can imagine. Overcoming a fear enables us to have the confidence to tackle other challenges. It improves feelings of self worth and self esteem. It gives us the opportunity to have more of things we want in our lives and to improve the quality of our lives.

Author’s Bio:

I am a Counselor, Life Management and Relationship Coach, Board Certified Sexologist. I have been counseling individuals and couples for nearly 20 years. I have also worked with clients throughout the country via the internet on Skype for several years. Distance counseling and coaching is becoming more accepted and is as effective as face to face. My focus is to provide solution focused and judgment-free counseling/coaching.
I have both experience and training in sex therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy, trauma resolution, and addiction counseling. I continue to add to my skills. Prior to having a full time private practice I worked in both Inpatient and Intensive Outpatient programs. My goal with all my clients is to help them achieve a more rewarding and fuller life.

Please visit my website for more information. www.alttherapist.org.

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What Am I Here For?

Feeling the fear … and doing it anyway

I came across this quote today, which perfectly sums up the situation I’ve been in recently. I have loads of tenacity but I’ve been taking very little action.

So after months of fatigue, self sabotage, procrastination, mental conflict and battling my gripping fears I have finally begun.

Over the weekend I started making some of the changes I need to make, it’s all baby steps right now as I tread somewhat timidly towards my new life.

Now that my fears have somewhat subsided, I realize this is going to be good. Good for me and good for my children.

Today I even feel a little excited.

Ever heard of ‘The Hero’s Journey’, well I’ve finally accepted the call.

I found this short video regarding ‘The Hero’s Journey’. The woman in it Elizabeth Gilbert is my hero and mentor right now..

She calls it ‘the Quest’ and that your quest starts off with the question – ‘what am I here for?’

So what are you here for?

Check it out

Love and baby steps,

SG

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How to Live Your Dream When You’re Scared to Death

This is a guest post by Jeff Goins. Jeff is a writer who lives in Nashville. He works for Adventures in Missions and recently released an eBook called You Are a Writer
There is a tragedy in our world today. Most people aren’t living their dreams, and the reason is simple: fear. They’re scared to be who they are.

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When you endeavor to find your life’s work, there is a lot at risk:
  • You could fail.
  • You could lose the respect of your friends.
  • You could go broke.

You could mess up in a hundred different ways. But—and this is important—you could also succeed. And until you start living into your calling, you’re robbing the world of a gift.

After years of procrastinating, I finally pursued my dream. I decided to become a writer. To my surprise, I saw success far more quickly than expected: I launched a popular blog, got a publishing contract, and found my true fans—all within a year.

How did this happen? Simple. I believed in the dream before it happened. I didn’t wait for fear to go away; I started living into the reality I was longing for.

If you’re going to live and lead intentionally, you’ll have to do the same. There are three steps you need to take if you’re going to pursue your passion.

Step 1: Declare it. Although I’ve written for most of my life, I never considered myself a writer—not until recently.

When a friend asked what my dream was and I told him I didn’t have one, he said, “That’s funny… because I would’ve thought it was to be a writer.” I said that was probably true.

Then he said something I’ll never forget:

You don’t have to want to be a writer; you are a writer. You just need to write.”

The words resonated in my soul. I realized that before I could expect others to believe something about me, first I would have to believe it myself.

Step 2: Believe it. Friends and family often notice our gifts before we do. They acknowledge the talents and resources we’ve been doubting and dismissing.

The only way to find your dream is to trust the gifts you’ve been given. I’m not talking about a misguided “name it and claim it” philosophy. You need to accept the value you offer, not invent it. But at some point, you need to stop doubting yourself.

There is a word for this: it’s called faith.

Before the ancient Hebrews saw the Promised Land, they believed in it. They trusted in a place they hadn’t yet seen, which brought them through the desert and into their destiny.

You need to grasp the possibility of achieving your dream before it happens. You’ll have to believe it before you see it.

Step 3: Do it. A few years ago, my wife and I attended a concert, and halfway through the show, a man clumsily spilled beer on her coat. I complained to one of the ushers, and he warned the man, but no further action was taken.

Later, I went to the bathroom and returned to a crying wife. She wanted to leave. On our way out of the auditorium, she told me the man had harassed her while I was gone. I was outraged.

Turning around, I marched back into the auditorium, and confronted the man. It was, honestly, one of the scariest things I’ve done as an adult.

I hadn’t stood up to a bully since the second grade, and there I was—in front of a towering, muscle-bound beefcake, calling him an idiot.

With my heart racing and my palms sweating, I demanded respect and an apology. And then something incredible happened.

He said he was sorry.

In that moment, I learned an important lesson: until we act, our values are just dreams. I believed in my wife’s honor—in theory—but until I stood up for her, it was just a good idea.

This is an essential takeaway for all of us called to meaningful work. Although we are not merely what we do, we become what we practice. And if you’re practicing insecurity and fear, what does that make you?

If you have a dream or calling you’re not yet living into, it’s time to get to work:

  1. Declare you are what you’re waiting to be.
  2. Believe in your dream before you see it.
  3. And then do it.

Remember: Until you start living it, you’re only dreaming.