5 Tips on How to Face Your Fears

Without breaking the confidence and trust of my very close friends, I want to tell you about something I coach women how to handle.  The word is fear.  Most often, when I do a client intake, fear of failure at trying something new is there in the beginning.  One of the most important things for me is not to push people, but to get them moving in the right direction.  Once I see that, I can step back and let them go.

This fear of failure needs to be explored.  De-cluttered.  Looked at under a microscope.  And then released.  Once we have done everything we needed to do with it, we let it go…kind of like catch and release.  How do you propose I teach you to do that in one short blog post?  Well, honestly, that’s where my 4 Weeks to Wellness program comes in and you take the bonus option, but I want you to start today so that you have these tools under your belt for later.

5 Tips on How to Face Your Fears:

  1. Name it.  Yes, I know.  This seems too simple.  But what exactly are you afraid of and why?  For some of my clients, it’s getting better and I know this fear only too well.  What if…it starts off like that.  Write out all of your “what ifs” and “but this could happen” until you narrow it down to the one that clicks.  The final reason.  The real McCoy.  The one you look at on your list and you say “Well, shit.  I didn’t know I was still dragging this around with me.” 
  2. Examine the feelings.  Journal it.  You knew I was going to say that.  How has this held you back?  What would it be like if you could get over it?  What changes can you see coming into your life for the better once this fear has been released?  Now that it is named and out there, it’s kind of like Rumpelstiltskin…the one from the fairy tales.  It has no power.  You know its name.
  3. Ask yourself why now.  Maybe it came up because it was related to something else someone else is going through and you are afraid that will happen to you.  Stop those kinds of stories right now.  Is it something from the past?  Is it something you are afraid of in the future?  What are you missing out on right now by not fully living?
  4. Come up with the absolute WORST thing that could happen.  Will you look stupid?  Will you die?  <<< that scenario might be the worst thing that really could happen, and if that is a thought, then go to your next question.  Can you stop it by worrying about it?  Could you join a support group and help others on the same path as you and thus by helping them face this fear, help you realize you are not alone?  Could you turn this fear into a leadership role?  Could you learn something new from it?  Could you, in fact, live in the present and celebrate the abundance you already have?  Could you meditate or do yoga to continue to help release this fear?
  5. Make a plan to move forward.  What would the opposite of this fear feel like?  What are your dreams that it has blocked up until now?  Step into your light, no really visualize the white light of protection from this fear and step into it.  Your dreams are possible.  Repeat that mantra.  Life is an adventure and it’s your to take.  See the sights you want to see, take from it what you need, but learn to release what no longer serves you. 

fear_kid

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Stop listening to fear.

Stop Listening to Fear.

Originally published last July 2014.

Procrastination.  Excuses.  Reasons why your path looks like Billy’s from The Family Circus when he had a job to do.  I don’t want to hear it.  We all know deep down what’s holding us back and usually it has one name.  Fear.  You need to pull a Bruce Willis on that thing and just go for it.

Things do come up.  I know they do.  But if you let these “things” get in the way of your goals, then your life will become a string of excuses.  I meant to do that, but…   We were going to, but…  I’m not saying I don’t have my own fears because I do.  I certainly do.  It’s just that I am ridiculous when it comes to them and do stupid things to get over them so I can move on.  Like the time I got bit by a snake, then was afraid of snakes for a while.  So then I volunteered at the local Virginia Living Museum, and learned how to stick my hand in a pillow case and pull out a snake.  Yes.  True story.  I also learned how to identify which ones were venomous in my area.

Quitting my job when I had no extra income was like sticking my hand in that pillow case.  I knew when I went on my “sabbatical” I was never going back.  I knew I needed more.  Starting my business was that more.  I love getting messages from clients asking me for help.  That’s brave of them as well.  They have tried lots of things to lose weight, feel better, get healthy, but for whatever reason, fear, they need a little extra help.  And that’s ok.  I did too!!  I was afraid I was going to stay stuck at my old weight forever.  When I got on the scale and realized how much I weighed compared to old me, I was shocked.  At 5’2 I knew I needed to get a handle on it.

When I put all my research skills into formulating a plan that worked best for my diseases and body, I knew I was finally on the right track in December.  I have now lost 15 pounds, but I am not done.  I have 6 more to go, and the extra 21 will be gone.  I am going to be adding yoga back into my routine again and I will also write about that.  I have been being a taxi cab, so I made excuses why I didn’t make it to yoga.  I sat down today and wrote out the yoga schedule so it was in front of my face!!! I know that going back worries me.  I am afraid it will hurt because of my existing pain, but I know that it will help me.  I have researched exercises for fibromyalgia and this is one of them.  So, I’m going to pull a Die Hard and go for it.  Stick your hand in that pillow case folks.  Go for it!!

No fear

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Motivational Monday…procrastination

Procrastination.  Excuses.  Reasons why your path looks like Billy’s from The Family Circus when he had a job to do.  I don’t want to hear it.  We all know deep down what’s holding us back and usually it has one name.  Fear.  You need to pull a Bruce Willis on that thing and just go for it.

Things do come up.  I know they do.  But if you let these “things” get in the way of your goals, then your life will become a string of excuses.  I meant to do that, but…   We were going to, but…  I’m not saying I don’t have my own fears because I do.  I certainly do.  It’s just that I am ridiculous when it comes to them and do stupid things to get over them so I can move on.  Like the time I got bit by a snake, then was afraid of snakes for a while.  So then I volunteered at the local Virginia Living Museum, and learned how to stick my hand in a pillow case and pull out a snake.  Yes.  True story.  I also learned how to identify which ones were venomous in my area.

Quitting my job when I had no extra income was like sticking my hand in that pillow case.  I knew when I went on my “sabbatical” I was never going back.  I knew I needed more.  Starting my business was that more.  I love getting messages from clients asking me for help.  That’s brave of them as well.  They have tried lots of things to lose weight, feel better, get healthy, but for whatever reason, fear, they need a little extra help.  And that’s ok.  I did too!!  I was afraid I was going to stay stuck at my old weight forever.  When I got on the scale and realized how much I weighed compared to old me, I was shocked.  At 5’2 I knew I needed to get a handle on it.

When I put all my research skills into formulating a plan that worked best for my diseases and body, I knew I was finally on the right track in December.  I have now lost 14 pounds, but I am not done.  I have 6 more to go, and the extra 20 will be gone.  I am going to be adding yoga back into my routine again and I will also write about that.  I have been being a taxi cab, so I made excuses why I didn’t make it to yoga.  I sat down today and wrote out the yoga schedule so it was in front of my face!!! I know that going back worries me.  I am afraid it will hurt because of my existing pain, but I know that it will help me.  I have researched exercises for fibromyalgia and this is one of them.  So, I’m going to pull a Die Hard and go for it.  Stick your hand in that pillow case folks.  Go for it!!

 

Fear

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Narrow-mindedness…

nar·row-mind·ed (năr′ō-mīn′dĭd)

adj.  Lacking tolerance, breadth of view, or sympathy; petty.  Sometimes you find this word with intolerance – unwillingness to recognize and respect differences in opinions or beliefs.

When I was teaching, I could always tell which children were told that not everyone is alike, and therefore, you shouldn’t treat them the same.  I don’t know if parents mean to do this to their children, or if it just comes from years of being told the same thing.  Their parents did it to them, so therefore, it must be the way that children should be raised.  However, at some point, your inner voice starts telling you that maybe it’s okay to make friends with people who are not like you.  As a matter of fact, not only is it okay, but it is good for you.  You become a more well-rounded person and your view of the world starts to become smaller actually, as you realize that on the inside, we are all the same.

Teaching tolerance will always be something I value.  Like Daryl Davis.  If you are unfamiliar with this man, let me tell you a bit of his story.  Daryl is a black musician and in 1983, well after the Civil Rights Movement, he was playing in a all-white (informally of course) lounge.  A man approached him after his set, and said he liked his piano playing.  That started a relationship between the two…the black man and a member of the KKK.  This was one of the coolest stories I had heard in a long time.  I wish this story was made part of the curriculum in high schools all around the country.  You can read more about Daryl Davis: A Black Man Amidst the Klan or in this interesting piece here.

Of particular interest to me is how he was brought up:
I was raised overseas in integrated schools. I had had a racist experience already but I didn’t know people organized into groups whose premise was to be racist and exclude other people. It seemed unfathomable to me. My parents were in the Foreign Service and I was an American embassy brat, going to international schools overseas. My classes were filled with anyone who had an embassy: Japanese, German, French, Italian. It was multicultural but that term did not exist at that time. For me it was just the norm. Every time I would come back (to the US,) I would see people separated by race. When my father was telling me about (the KKK) at the age of 10 it didn’t make any sense to me. I had always gotten along with everyone.
With a diverse background, he came to the United States.  He had some pretty funny conversations with one of his friends in the Klan about the brainwashing prejudice causes.  When people are confronted with images of something they don’t understand, be it other religions, race, or ways of life, they react as if they are brainwashed.  This is another line I like from one of the articles I read above: When asked about the fear many people feel when confronted with images of KKK members, he says “It’s just material. You have to address what’s in the person’s head and in their heart.”
Indeed you do.  Preach it.
ignorance

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A matter of minutes…

In a matter of minutes, I have 5 post ideas go through my head.  I look around the house, and wonder what it would be like if my house was always clean.  If things were always in place.  If not a paper were cluttering the counters.  Then I realized it would look like life was not being lived.  So many things have happened in the world this week, that I have stayed quiet about them in order to reflect.

If you knew that your life could change in a matter of minutes, would you really be glad your house was clean?  I don’t think so.  Would you be glad you always say “I love you.” when hanging up from loved ones?  Yes.  I know so.  Would you think about that bill you forgot to pay?  I hope not.  Would you be glad you took your kids out to get some Rita’s?  Yes.  I know so.  Would you think about the laundry that sits piled up on your couch because you don’t have a laundry room?  Doubtful.  You would be glad your kids always had clean clothes to wear.  Just remember, some things slip by us and they are important.  Those are the things you have to go after.  Those are the things that when you die, you don’t want to be thinking about them.  The rest can wait.  My mom made a comment the other day when I posted that I was listening to one of my favorite songs from the 80’s, she said “Stay in the 80’s dear.  It was a more peaceful time.”

You have to work to make this a more peaceful time.  You have to work to find the balance for your family and what you want to accomplish for the rest of your life.  I have to make some scary decisions in the next few months, but they are not so scary when I think about it.  The answer is right there.  Do you want to live your life or have a life that looks good on the outside, but is not really being lived?  I already know my answer.

“The things that we love tell us what we are.”  ~Thomas Aquinas
P.S.  I have to send some manuscripts off.  Just breathe.

A letter to my dog…

Dear Noel,

I am terribly sorry about everything that has happened to you over the last few months.  I know that you already understand how hard this is for me.  The fact that you were partially paralyzed broke my heart.  Your spirit has not been the same since that occurred and I know I am only prolonging your misery.  The way you used to gallop all over the house to find me brought us both great joy.  I know you can’t get up the stairs now and that you might be in pain.  The trick you did when I was folding laundry was always one of my favorites…you never were really a meerkat, but if you wanted to pretend, it was fine with me.  I loved the way you “killed” your toys and viciously fought over them with your older brother,  Emrys, the ancient long-haired dachshund. The guys will miss your crack-headed self as they came over to play a game of D & D and you jumped right into their laps sometimes forgetting the table was in the way.  The girls will miss you as well.  You have been a great mini-me following me around as we tucked them into bed and said prayers.  I even think daddy will miss you although he might not admit it.  I know it has been hard on him too even though you bark quite a bit.  Your grandparents wish you well on your journey and I know that you will watch over us from above.  May the road rise up to meet you and may there be squeaky balls to play with.  May the sun shine on your face, and there be plenty of holes to dig.  And until we meet again, may God hold you in His lap and spoil you.

With love,

Your family

“You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing which you think you cannot do.”  ~Eleanor Roosevelt

P.S.  Thank you dear readers for going on this journey with me.  I appreciate all your thoughts as I have dealt with this.