“We can either watch life from the sidelines, or actively participate. Either we let self-doubt and feelings of inadequacy prevent us from realizing our potential, or embrace the fact that when we turn our attention away from ourselves, our potential is limitless.” – Christopher Reeve
Happiness is a choice! You can either create the circumstances to have more, or perversely create the circumstances to have less of it in your life.
We all face challenges & struggles on a regular basis in our lives, but it’s how you choose to react to the environment surrounding you that will determine if you’re going to have a good or bad day. You wake up with challenges surrounding you.. you make yourself breakfast and you see it smiling back at you. Is it a sarcastic smile that is making fun of your situation, or is it life encouraging you to smile and work through your challenges? Choose the latter & the day just seems to end up much more happy & productive.
Don’t let fear govern your life!
Most limitations are self imposed and they can very often be linked back to childhood beliefs that we imposed on us. “Resist burdening your children with your fears and insecurities. Instead, while they experience life with innocence and imagination, in the now, guide them with wisdom and love.” — Darren Sproat. This is to say that most fears limiting us are imposed, and the vital key is to find a way of facing that fear and reversing it’s paralyzing effect is as simples as knowledge.
1. Talk to your fear
The goal is not to get rid of fear. Fear is a protective mechanism that originates from your ego, whose #1 job is to protect you & keep you safe. Fear never goes away entirely, but if you talk to it as you would any other “being” that you’re curious to understand, it can become an all empowering conversation. See fear as an opportunity to better understand yourself. Maybe you haven’t studied, or thought through the situation enough. Confront your fear, ask it what it’s trying to tell you, and see it as an opportunity to develop, learn & grow. Make your decisions moving forward to include rather than exclude your fear. Fear can be more of an alley than an enemy if you learn to “listen”.
2. Dance with your fear
Now that you know why you’re afraid of something, it’s time to decide how important it is that you take the next step. If you’re passionate about something, you really want to succeed, and you’ve realized that what you fear isn’t life threatening, then it’s just a matter of finding the resources that will allow you to move forward. Resources come in all shapes & sizes! They can be found in a book, an article, a conversation, a course or even a movie or song.
I used to be terrified to speak in public, and then I came to understand that it was based on my fear of being embarrassed or humiliated. I had something to say & contribute to the world but my fear held me back! I studied those that I admired, I took some courses, I learned to project my voice & calm my nerves through breathing. I learned to make friends with members of an audience and then I gradually built up the size of my audiences. I purposefully chose to only speak about topics I was passionate about and had deep knowledge about.
Almost like awakening from a dream, I’m still astonished at how much I love getting up in front of an audience & charging them with my passion.
I still get butterflies every time I go up on stage.. but now I just choose to talk, walk & address my fear instead of fighting or allowing it to paralyze & silence me.
What about you?
How is fear paralyzing you & silencing your voice? What are the fears you’ve been burdened with? How can you address them & learn to flourish whilst walking with them in your life?