Fear can play funny tricks on us.
It can cause us to limit our dreams, dodge conflict, keep ourselves busy, avoid risks, activate addictive behaviour, or impact our wellbeing.
The good news is if you’ve felt fear, you’re not alone.
I feel it. My friends feel it. People I work with tell me they feel it too.
It’s one of the great gifts of being human… having a full range of emotions.
Your fear might get activated when you
* Need to have a difficult conversation
* Have to speak to a large audience
* Are stepping into your classroom for the first time
* Working to make positive changes in your life
* Trying something new
Often when fear is activated it means we’re growing.
So knowing how to be with your fear is important for unleashing your greatest potential.
When fear comes for a visit, here’s a suggested way to be with it:
1. Locate it – Sit in a chair, close your eyes, breathe deeply and locate where the fear is sitting in your body. For me fear sits in my chest or sometimes my stomach. You can put your hand on the area of your body when you locate it.
2. Feel it – With your eyes still closed feel the feeling. Breathing deeply and gently feel it. Often when we feel our fear it expands. Depending on the strength of the fear, you might only be able to feel it for short periods. By feeling it, you’re bringing kindness & awareness to it.
3. Give it what it needs – If a child is afraid you would give that child what he or she needs. That child might need your compassion, kindness, love, attention, time, or presence. The same is true for you. As you breathe deeply, feel your fear and give it the energy it needs – love, kindness, and presence. Give it the gift of you.
Rather than running away, rejecting it or thinking about it, when your fear is activated, get quiet, sit still and feel your way through it.
PS – Your breath is the tool for being with your fear and giving it what it needs. If you haven’t seen my interview with Allison Post on how to use your breath, click here to watch it now.
A question for you:
What do you do with your fear to help you reach your fullest potential? Add your comments below and inspire others!