One question I get asked all the time is, “How did/do you just go for it and not let your fear of failing / looking like you don’t know what you’re talking about / going broke / the never ending list of ‘but, what if…?’s keep you from what you want?”
And every time I have to laugh before I respond. I wasn’t born with extra confidence. I don’t have less fear than anyone else. I’m not extremely extroverted, in fact I’m fairly introverted. And, I don’t have a trust fund to fall back on if my decisions go wrong, especially my biz decisions.
What I have been really good at? Creeping. 😉
Don’t worry, I’m not peeping in your window. What I mean by this is, since I was little I’ve always closely watched other people who were successful in areas that I wanted to experience and achieve – from romantic relationships to financial freedom to entrepreneurship. Hello, current Shark Tank obsession.
By watching others it saves a lot of time and gives me a lot wisdom of what to do and what not to do.
And when it came to watching others act in spite of the fear, I realized 3 things…
- FEEDBACK – Fear wasn’t really as scary as everyone was making it out to be… or as scary as the sweaty pits and shaking voice my body can convey. It’s just an emotion and sensation giving us feedback on what to pay attention to, learn from, or let go. (i.e. a lion chasing us or something new that requires courage).
- DISCOMFORT – We can feel uncomfortable while stuck in a place we don’t want to be OR we can feel uncomfortable moving towards what we desire…why not get what we desire?
- ACTION – It’s not people who have less fear that are happier, have more freedom or achieve more… it’s people who have figured out how to take action in spite of that fear that leads to fully lived + loved lives.
That left me with the big question of “but, how?” HOW did they take action?
Here’s a system that never fails…
4 steps to act in spite of fear
STEP ONE // Expect it.
Until the day we die, we will experience fear. It’s not going anywhere. If we an expect it, welcome it, and anticipate it, it shifts the entire way we experience fear. For example, when I’ve gone to haunted houses. I expect to be scared, to have things jump out at me, and to feel my fear of what could come next… but there is a sense of excitement and adventure. However, if I’m walking in the woods and I’m feeling uneasy and I’m not anticipating a squirrel to jump out of the shadow…I can be terrified (cute li’l guy). If we can expect that fear will come and simply welcome it as a natural response in our lives, it loses its power on us.
STEP TWO // Feel it.
It’s when we numb out (shopping, food, sleep, social media, etc.) and avoid that fear, it becomes much bigger than it really is. If we expect it, welcome it, and then let ourselves actually fully feel the fear and the uncomfortable sensations in our body, it usually dissipates in 7-9 seconds (research supported, beauties!)
STEP THREE // Voice it.
Say out loud that you feel fear. The split second you voice it, it loses some of its power over you. Tell someone else (that values you) about it and it loses even more power.
STEP FOUR // Act in spite of it.
Uncover every possible first step you could take to move in that direction and then take 1 small step at a time. Want to move to a new location but afraid it could ruin your bank account and happiness? Start researching potential places you could move to and create space for possibility.
CHOOSE to take action.