Fear back in the dark ages served us well when saber-toothed tigers approached us. We went into flight or fight mode, most likely flight in that scenario for me! Fear happened on occasion and it helped protect us, we needed it and still does for certain life-threatening situations. However now we get so fearful about a multitude of things and it is becoming more prevalent as the years roll on. Society and culture have changed, and we have evolved. Unfortunately, part of the change in society has created widespread fear in so many areas of our life. Fearful of letting go of a relationship, changing career, being different, to uploading a post on social media. The list goes on! Children are plagued by fear, anxiety, panic attacks, in fact, 1 in 8 are, and that truly breaks my heart! We cannot necessarily change every part of society although we can absolutely try to create the best environment possible to live in. Part of this is arming ourselves with tools and strategies to use when fear comes knocking on our door.
Below are 8 simple steps to use when cortisol levels are screaming at you with fear:
1) Thoughts are not necessarily the truth! They feel real, of course, they do, yet you decide if they own you. Many thoughts are "what ifs"
Know this- what is going on for you mentally and physically is linked to your thoughts which are not gospel! Start getting used to that in your mind, repeat that several times if you need to.
2) Look Fear straight in the eye, no hiding, and say, “I hear you fear, I see you fear”. Acknowledgement is so vital, because have you ever noticed when you try and run from something it always rears its head when you are least expecting?! Face that “Fear” full-on!
3) What actually are you fearful of? We often feel scared and fearful yet haven’t drilled down to what it truly is. Deep down in your soul what are you scared of happening? Get very clear on this, even if it is painful and brings uncomfortable feelings. Once you have truly uncovered what the Fear is, where it is rooted, you can start moving into phase 4.
4) Is what you are fearful of the truth? How do you know what you are fearful of is actually going to happen??? Our Ego, inner critic voice, whatever you name it, mine is Beryl will tell you lots of stories about “what if”. She is pretty boring with her “what ifs”, bloody relentless, and can easily get you in a frenzy with your fear. So now it is time to question your fear and ask “Do I 100%, categorically know that what I am fearing is going to happen?” And I mean 100%!
5) Evidence!! What evidence do you have that what you are fearful of is actually going to happen? What evidence have you to reflect on where it didn’t happen??? And if it did happen in the past what did you learn? There is always a learning and a way to move forward. Fear does need to determine your life!
6) Now you know there is no guarantee about what you are fearing actually happening, you have investigated the evidence, plus you have now fully acknowledged that inner self-sabotage voice. This takes you to a point where you can decide to step back a bit from that pessimistic voice and listen to your more rational optimistic side of your mind! Oh Hello! This part of your brain is shining a light on the fact you have a choice around this pesky unwanted Fear. That’s right a choice!
7) Step out of Fear and into Faith! What are the payoffs for pushing through your fear? What do you gain in your life and soul? Imagine, and I mean properly visualize how you will feel as you step past fear and move forward. See it, feel it, and believe it! It’s pretty amazing to do this step and get your energy levels elevated by seeing the other possibility outside of Fear. I sometimes put an upbeat funky song on when I get to this point to really shift myself and feel good!
8) Revisit these steps as many times as you need to, and go for it!!
If you want to really dive even deeper into your fears and dig them right out from the roots, with someone listening and believing in you, I am ready to be your coach. I will partner with you and provide the non-judgmental space you need to get you back in charge of Fear. Imagine moving into that place away from anxiety, worry, lacking fulfillment, to the beautiful and wonderful place of faith! Faith in you, your capability, your worth, your life! It’s incredible once you step into that new world!
Next Spring will also be the launch of my “Fear “to “ Faith” workshops where a tribe will be created to take you to a new level of empowerment with like-minded people. If group work is your thing watch out for this, and in the meantime do reach out to express interest at Natalie.Todd@flipthefearcoaching.com