Feel the Fear and do it anyway
Posted on 1st October 2021 at 21:48
Have you heard this before? A well known book written by Susan Jeffers has the title but it is a thing that experts in the field of promotion, self-development , coaching , mentoring , counselling and many more use a lot and this is my take on it.
Fear is something set up in our brains to protect us. No surprises there and in my work fear is an element in most of the work I do with clients.
Fear of change, fear of failure, fear of dogs, fear of being hurt, I mean the list hear really is endless and we do work to overcome this fear because in most cases it is causing an actual barrier to something they really want to achieve.
Fear of change. Perhaps they want to leave their awful job which is causing them a lot of upset but change of routine is terrifying to them.
Fear of failure. Perhaps they want to start a new project but the fear of failing at this is making them miss out on potentially something really brilliant for them.
Fear of dogs. Ok well maybe they don’t need to worry too much about this one. Besides they just don’t own a dog but what if every time they go for a walk in the countryside and come across the dog, they have a panic attack. That’s effecting their life adversely.
You get the picture.
I really feel however that we shouldn’t just dismiss fear and carry on through regardless, or “do it anyway”…all of the time at least. Fear is of benefit because life does have risks in it and this is our protection mechanism.
I will share with you a story of a client I worked with last year. She had started a new relationship but she was afraid that it might not work out. This fear was all consuming to the point that she was having no real fun and enjoyment within this new relationship. I could have gone blindly in advising her to get rid of the fear, go for it girl and dismiss her caution but instead we explored this on a deeper level. She had reservations for a few reasons. Firstly, she had been hurt before and she was scared this would happen again. Valid reason for fear and if that was the only thing then we may have worked on letting all this fear going so she could enjoy this amazing new relationship.
The thing is, this was not the case. The relationship was actually not great and this new man in her life was displaying some worrying behaviours that reminded her mind of past abusive relationships.
Was the fear mechanism in her mind working effectively for her here? Was it doing exactly what it was designed for ? Protecting her from potential harm ?
As we continued to work together the real fear that she wanted to get rid of , was her fear of being alone. This fear had actually lead her into a string of unhealthy relationships throughout her life.
This was the key. How she felt about herself and being in her own space and time without a partner. As with most sessions of hypnotherapy this lead us down a completely different road.
Fear and nerves can also be confused with each other. Feel the fear and do it anyway is often used in business terms. Make that speech ! Send that email ! It all comes down to the perspective. Doing something we care about or doing something new will also alert the mind. It will alert us to the fact that this is new and we are not sure how this will go so this is when the butterflies in the tummy start and perhaps an increased heart rate.
This is a normal and expected reaction to a new situation, and it does not need to turn into a fear. I hear so many people say, “ I have a fear of public speaking” “ I have a fear of trying new things “ and while Im not dismissing this in any way, it may be that if they changed that message around at the very first time of say making a speech then this may stop the fear developing into well, a fear ! If at day one when they did that speech they said to themselves when the tummy started churning…”
This is a normal reaction and this will pass “ or “ This is my body telling me I’m trying something new, how exciting “ , perhaps this is the last time they really felt like that because guess what. The mind will respond to positive messages and if you can convince it that everything is ok then it will absolutely love that.
Now this brings me back I guess to the first point that all the other professionals have tried to make. Do they actually mean…feel the butterflies in your tummy and do it anyway? Feel the nerves and do it anyway? Its not as punchy, but I feel that this is what this phrase means.
Fear is one thing…nerves and expected caution is another.
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