Fear, how we despise it so deeply, yet somehow the little bug never fades away. Like an invisible cockroach whispering ideas into your head. Do I have fears? Do you? Sure, we all do. Yet I know for a fact that together we can work to push it away, and turn that F.E.A.R into enjoyment. Fear can be… enjoyable? Just you wait and see, my friends!
What Forms F.E.A.R?
What if I let them down? What if I become poor? What if- Failure, I feel many of us find this as a big encouragement in fear. Some even fear failure in itself. That is okay! Have you ever heard of a Commitment Contract? It’s where you give yourself an imposing thread (donating to a company you despise, having to post embarrassing photos, etc.) in order to keep yourself motivated. In the beginning, the sense of failure is negative, keeping us from reaching out. Yet if we turn that around, our whole well beings will become a thousand times stronger.
Remember watching TV shows as a kid where someone (say, good old Spongebob) ripped his/her pants and they were quite flustered? Perhaps you found yourself in a similar situation. From laughing at an inappropriate time, tripping in the hallway, screaming at a fake spider, we’ve all experienced it. Many of us find the imposing threat of embarrassment holding us back from activities. Why? Because as humans, our social lives – no matter extroverted or introverted – do affect us. Maybe we cannot use embarrassment to our advantage, but we can overcome it together.
I made a reference once to being a kid, scared of monsters, yet trying to be brave. I think, having all been in that situation, we must have been squirming with the sense of abandonment. Where were our mum, dad, guardian, grandparents? Where was the light? Where was jolly ol’ sun when you needed him? Or maybe, as you stare at this fantastic opportunity, you have turned away. Judgement, it’s something again many of us fear. If we are judged, we could be abandoned. Yet I promise you, I promise that we can get through this step.
“Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times if one only remembers to turn on the light.” ~Dumbledore.
For some, the sense of commitment, or responsibility, is nerve-wracking. Will I manage the task long term? Will I stay motivated? It is okay, I can relate to that, too. From these words that truly make most of F.E.A.R, I feel the sense of responsibility can be the easiest to manage and turn to our advantage. So let us learn how, no?
How do We Banish F.E.A.R?
That was fairly intense, was it not? Yet I know together we can turn the base of F.E.A.R around, allowing us to simply push it away. So let’s begin!
Write a Goals List: When I was younger, I took an online course on becoming an “All-Star Student” for high school. Well, one lesson gave the most brilliant suggestion I recommend to everyone. Since I do not have my paper any longer, here is what I recall. Date the top with the day you start then write “Short Term Goals”, “Long Term Goals” (3+ years out). Under the two sections, put “Family”, “Social”, “Exercise”, and “Academic” (if applicable). I also recommend adding a “Financial”. Hang it up on your wall where you work the most (or make a few copies!) and let this help!
Pick a New Thing: How can this help with F.E.A.R? Well, a few ways actually! Picking something and writing down in your schedule sets your mind to it being a requirement. Start simple, like doing a new hobby, and work your way up, like to skydiving (or… not?). If you want to really make sure that F.E.A.R is banished, then find someone you respect (family, friend, etc.) and have them give you something to do. That way you are even more likely to follow through. This leads to my next suggestion!
Keep a Memory Box: Now to tackle something holding many of us back: the fear of abandonment. I recommend everyone to do this, regardless of your fears. It’s simple to do! Find a shoebox, or even large envelope, and fill it with letters (even print emails), photos, small objects, and such things from people you love. Whenever you are feeling down, or afraid of being abandoned, look through this box and let it remind you that your true family and friends will never leave you.
Journal Time: I truly do recommend this to everyone. Sit down every day and journal. Let go of your fears, anxieties, and your goals, dreams, and hopes. Combine things together like a puzzle, and let it all soak into the pages. Another thing people say is to go to a quiet place with no people – say, a hiking trail near a river, or an empty beach – and just let it out. You have fears? Ramble in this place. Or write a letter and bury it. Let out a scream. Whatever fits your needs.
Research and Talk: Some of us need reassurance, and from others everywhere. Some need the facts from reliable sources. Either way, take some time to research and find websites, articles, blogs, forums, just to gain a bit more confidence! Who knows? You might find a lifelong friend that way who can help you overcome your fears. Of course, do not forget to talk to those whom you know in person as well! Discussing your fears with close family and friends can really help.
In Short? Simply let go: We have made it this far, so congratulations! In the end, it is all about just letting go, smiling, and saying, “I can do this. Fear will not control me.” I wish you the best of luck on your journey!
Until next time,
Ashlee G., Author of Creative Thinking Well