In our previous post about overcoming fear, we looked at a few ideas for how to build resilience and put yourself in a better position to be empowered and overcome fears that may be holding you back. Just like many of our fears are learned, courage is a skill that can be learned too, particularly with the right steps and support systems in place. In this second and final article of the series, we will look at some further steps you can take to overcome fear.
Fear of Failure
Fear of failure is one of the top fears of many. The problem with this fear is that it can leave you crippled and not doing anything to effectively move forward. If you think about this in a business sense, the most successful businesses have had to take some kind of risks to get there, if you are unwilling to take those risks due to fear of failure, you will stay right where you are now.
We discussed the power of positive thinking last time; this is a known antidote to fear of failure, but there are other things you can do. One of those is to remove associated fear of the unknown. This can be achieved by mapping out all possible outcomes of a decision beforehand so that you are comfortable that you know what might happen and what action you may take. Having a ‘Plan B’ is also a good way to help you move forward, while considering the worst case scenario may also be a help. Sometimes that scenario truly is disastrous (in which case on with Plan B), but quite often the worst case is not as bad as you may fear before really looking at it.
Have a Support Network
We all need the support of friends and family at times, but did you know that it has been shown that we really need each other during tough times? As essentially social creatures, we need the rapport of friends and family. The chemical oxytocin which binds those in close relationships has a lot to do with this as it has been shown to lessen the sensation of pain and fear. So choose your support network well and they can help give you the confidence boost you need!
Frame that Fear For Good
You may be afraid of heights and have decided that you’d really like to bungee jump as a way of conquering that fear – this becomes much more motivating if you can put a frame on your fear-conquering that will impact for the good of someone or something else. For example, you might raise sponsorship for that bungee jump and donate the money to a favorite charity. Whatever it is you choose, if you also attach an altruistic outcome to it you will be more motivated to achieve it.
Change the Frame
When a crisis seems to big for you to handle it can help to try and re-frame it and look from another perspective. Try considering the larger context rather than just whatever part scares you and see what good things may come from it rather than just negative. If you look at the best-case and worst-case scenarios, you may find that the worst-case is highly unlikely to happen, so you might as well not spend so much time worrying about it!
Overcoming fear is always challenging and can involve a big change in the frame of reference for many. However, if you are even able to just take small steps toward overcoming fears, you will find that doors of potential open up for you that you possibly have never seen before. Would you say it is worth a shot if it could improve your chances for success and achievement?