As promised, this is part 2 of my “Managing Fear” series. Read on!
Everyone encounters Fear. It doesn’t matter if you’re a 5-year-old child afraid of a cockroach or a 50-year-old person who’s nervous about speaking in front of a capacity crowd. Or a competent young man stuttering *grins* in front of an extremely attractive woman. Everybody, regardless of age, gender and ethnicity has to battle against the paralysis of Fear. Hey, don’t you wish it would just go away?
Despite the negative connotations that are attached to it and it’s tendency to choke us or make us feel inadequate, Fear can be a powerful ally in our quest to self-improvement and achieving our goals! Here’s why:
1) “Without Fear there can be no Courage”. Eric, a good friend of mine shared this with me after he had caught the movie Eragon. How true! Imagine if everything in life were available to you without work or cost. How’d it feel? Well, you might marvel at it for awhile (for some of you), but seriously, think about how boring it would be after a month, a year, a decade or so having everything that you wished for. BORING! The bottom-line here is this – there can be no value without cost. And to be able to overcome Fear is something that makes life interesting, and worth living!
2) Fear of pain drives us to avoid it! There are really two forces behind each and every human decision – conscious or not – and that is Pain and Pleasure. More specifically, it’s the persons’ need to avoid pain and desire to attain pleasure. It is exactly the Fear of failure or pain that motivates us to succeed!
3) Lastly, for the most important reason: Fear is the body’s natural reaction to protecting us from harm! Imagine if you were standing at the edge of a cliff, and felt no Fear whatsoever about leaping without a parachute. What do you think are the chances of you trying to do a Superman? Pretty high I’d say! But it’s the presence of Fear that saves us from doing something silly like leaping off without restraint!
Now the reason why I’m saying all these is to help you gain awareness and put things into perspective. Personally, I feel that all our emotions serve a purpose and some of them can be very powerful tools too! And being aware of them, their purpose and their role/ability to influence our actions is the first step to helping us deal with them. And in the case of Fear, overcome it and/or work with it for the betterment of ourselves.
In the next segment, I shall share with everyone some strategies on how to better understand our personal Fears and tips on how to overcome our Fears for greater performance!