How often do your fears hold you back from being who you want to be? I’m sure there are at least a few things you can think of that you are afraid of that are holding you back, but don’t think that you can’t change. You can work on it, face your fears, and eventually they will no longer be on your list of things you fear.
So, how exactly does one go about, with the least resistance, facing their fears and getting rid of them entirely?
They keyword there is resistance. You are going to resist against yourself when facing your fears and even try to talk yourself out of overcoming what you fear. There will always be resistance within yourself, but you’ve got to find the willpower to fight through it.
With the following 15 simple tactics and tips, you will be well on your way to overcoming any fear you wish to relieve from your life. Heck, you may even realize what you feared you now love!
Also a quick thing to note before we start, you need to know the difference between rational and irrational fears.
Rational fears are normal and typically occur from our natural survival instincts. While an irrational fear is something that has developed more-so because of the way we grew up and the things we have experienced in our lives.
For example, a rational fear could be like coming across a bear in the woods and being afraid of it, which is totally normal and a healthy response as it tells us we are in a bad situation and we need to find safety. While an irrational fear could be something like being afraid of needles simply because they hurt, although they are there to help up and keep us healthy (talking about from the doctors, by the way).
So rational fears are not something we can, or even should, change as they are instinctive. This post is aimed at getting over irrational fears, as these are the things that are possible to overcome.
Okay, now let’s get into the tactics and tips!
1. Live by this quote
Do what you fear the most, and you will conquer your fears.
2. Think about it
Just imagine yourself confronting your fears.
So if you fear spiders, imagine yourself holding one. If you fear failure, imagine yourself succeeding. The list goes on, but just think about doing and overcoming your fear, and eventually it won’t seem so bad if it were to be real.
3. Exposure therapy
This technique is quiet straight forward in theory, exposing yourself to your fear (in a safe manner) so you can overcome your fear.
Consider exposing yourself to your fears (in moderation of course), and eventually it will get easier to deal with. Thus, your fears will slowly fade away into nothing.
4. Write down your fears
Writing down your fears will help you get everything out there on the table.
From here, you can analyze which fears you wish to overcome the most and put the majority of your efforts into working on those. You don’t want to spread yourself too thin trying to face all your fears at once, focusing on a few will be much more effective for you.
5. Network with others
Finding other people that either have the same fear or phobia as you, or someone who has already overcome it, will be such a valuable asset to have while getting over your fears.
You will be able to relate with the struggles and thoughts you’ve encountered, as well as being able to give tips on things that may have worked for each of you in the process.
6. Let fear guide you
In some cases we fear what we really want, for example:
- Fear of failing
- Fear of disappointment to others
- Fear of not being the best
All these things have one thing in common, you like or enjoy the specific activity but you are afraid that you will mess up some how while doing it, thus you hold back doing it at all.
Often times these fears will tell us what is important to us, but we are just too afraid to go for it. These types of fears will be able to guide you in finding what you truly love in life, it’s just about getting over being afraid of failing and from there you will do what you are meant to do in life.
7. Play pretend
For this one to really be effective, you’ve got to be very open minded. Pretend you aren’t afraid, and go interact or face your fear.
Pretend for just a minute that it doesn’t bother you, and that it’s actually a fun experience instead of a scary one.
Now go, pretend you aren’t afraid and you may just find out that it’s not so bad after all!
8. Understand it’s okay – but it’s time to let go
It’s okay to have a fear and we all have them, but you need to just let it go.
What exactly do you gain from being afraid? Nothing, except a free ticket to living a life full of fears that drive you away from your goals.
It’s okay, but realize there is a way better lifestyle that is filled without fear and it’s waiting for you, you just need to let your fears go so you can be truly free.
9. Welcome it to your life
If you are always afraid of being approached by your fears you will continue on fearing them, and after an interaction with a certain fear there will be no progress made on overcoming it.
You need to be open to your fears coming into your life, even unexpectedly, and have an action plan for when they do. Next time you are confronted with your fears, you will realize that it is okay now because you are accepting of them.
10. Become an inspiration
The thought of becoming an inspiration for someone else can be a huge motivator for some people.
Become the inspiration you wish to see in the world, and you will feel fulfilled once you help others overcome the same things you’ve gone through.
11. Unlearn your fear
All of our irrational fears are learned throughout our lives.
So, why don’t we try and learn about why your fear is irrational? Go ahead and research your fears that are classified as irrational, and you will probably learn rather quickly that they aren’t going to truly harm you.
Once you realize your fears can’t do much and that it’s just in your head, you will be much more likely to overcome your fears.
11. Don’t rush yourself, but do push yourself
Obviously you need to push yourself to be able to overcome your fears, otherwise you will continue to avoid them and that won’t help at all.
But know the difference between rushing things and just pushing yourself to do things that will eventually help you.
Rushing things will only scare you off more from facing your fears as it will lead to way too much anxiety and negative feelings all at once. Instead, push yourself slowly and take baby steps in overcoming your fears.
12. Reward Yourself
Set milestones for yourself and once you reach them, reward yourself! This tip is pretty straight forward, you will work hard and face things you wouldn’t typically when you know you will be rewarded afterwards.
Find out what kind of rewards would motivate you to do something, then give them to yourself once you get to where you want to be in the process of overcoming your fear.
13. Consider therapy or life coaching
Therapists and life coaches can often supply you with invaluable advice. Sure, I am giving you invaluable advice here on this blog, but I don’t know each and everyones personal story that reads my posts.
A therapist or life coach will get to know you, know your struggles and the way you deal with them, and be able to give you very specific and unique advice just for you. So, consider it?
14 .What’s the worst that could happen?
Think about it, what is the worst possible outcome of your fear if you were to encounter it? If it isn’t bad (which it typically isn’t), it should be a huge relief for you to know that the worst possible outcome isn’t even that bad.
Of course some fears could have a really bad outcome, but the odds are so low you shouldn’t even consider it. For example, some people fear planes and although you would be screwed if it fell, the odds are in your favor and you are more likely to get hurt in your car than a plane, (Did I just provoke a new fear? Sorry in advance).
So you’ve got to balance out the odds with the worst possible outcome, and go from there.
15. Last but not least…
My last tip for everyone who wants to overcome there fears is simple, just try.
If you never at least give it a go, with all of your honest effort, nothing will ever change and get better. So take these tips and tactics, and just go try them out at least once.
Again, what’s the worst that could happen? 🙂