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How To ACE Your Fears

13/02/2017 16:18 GMT | Updated 13/02/2017 16:18 GMT

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Are your fears stopping you in your tracks ?

What is Fear exactly?

Well, there are two types of Fear :

1. Physical Fear : The Fight or Flight fear is the one that we are able to recognise all too easily. Examples are - the fear of deep water or heights. This is the fear that protect you from 'harm' - it's your survival instinct. The warning signs are, tightening of the chest, quickening of the breath and that sense of panic.

2. Emotional Fear : These fears are the ones that are more uncomfortable to address. Somehow you feel calmer, there's less urgency; but still a great sense of foreboding. Examples are - the fear of stepping into the spotlight, the fear of judgement - the fear of actually accomplishing your dreams and (heaven forbid) the fear of playing big.

"Risks and dangers are real

- but Fear is a choice."

That said - fear is necessary. It is there to protect us. It is nature's way of warning us that there is a threat. So fear cannot be ignored. But it can be harnessed and used to your advantage.

What are your fears costing you?

Perhaps you are lacking in confidence and think you keep getting things wrong. Maybe you're struggling with the kids and feel like you sound like a cracked record. Possibly you are just tired to the very bones and question if you are even cracked up for parenthood at all. All this is very normal ... and believe me - these thoughts are made worse with lack of sleep and persistent resistance from your 'little darlings'.

Your fears can lose all sense of proportion - take the fear of spiders for example.

Our repetitive thoughts soon become our behaviour.

I experienced this first hand. For years, I worried about being a failure (after an ill-fated comment from a teacher at the age of 10). In fact for decades, I suffered from "Imposter Syndrome"; worried that I might be rumbled and people would realise that I was just not good enough.

I cannot begin to think about the opportunities I let pass me by and the fun I missed out on - because I listened to, and worse still, believed these fears.

The reassuring thing is that once the emotional fears are addressed - and once you have acknowledged them as a right of passage, as part of the game of success, then things become less daunting. TRULY.

What are your fears stopping you from doing?

Stop playing small. I encourage you to put on your big girl/boy pants and get on with living your life. What's the worst than can happen? Imagine - right now - how your life could be, if your fears no longer held you back.

So How the Heck Do You Do This ?

Here's a three step technique that will help you ACE those Fears.

A - ACKNOWLEDGE your fears : Understanding that this is how it's meant to feel, really helps. It's a bit like hitting the wall in the marathon; you know it's going to appear at some stage along the way. So if you want to succeed, then these nagging doubts and feelings are something you need to encounter and deal with.

So what are your big fears? Some that many of my clients are voicing, are the fears of :

* being judged

* rejection

* upsetting people

* not being good enough

* not being loved

By addressing the fear, yes, it makes it real, but you are controlling it and keeping it manageable; thus avoiding the 'old' coping mechanism - which is panic and withdrawal.

C - CHALLENGE your fears : 90% of our fears don't even happen. Ask yourself how likely is it that this will really happen? Learn to focus on the current situation rather than the future possibilities.

Invariably this fear comes from past hurts. What is that positive intention behind your fears? Go back to that younger self and work out where this fear is coming from. It could be fear of rejection, of ridicule; maybe the fear of not measuring up. What is that inner voice trying to protect you from now? The trouble is that these fears may no longer be warranted.

Having identified the fear - Ask yourself " Is This Still True?"

Very often - circumstances have changed. YOU have changed. These opinions from the past - may not be fact. By addressing this deep-rooted fear, you are able to confront these fears that have shadowed your thinking.

You're now starting to take back the control.

E - EXORCISE your fears : Your brain needs to work through these fears. If you don't process these thoughts - then every time they come up again - the problem gets that little bit larger; it's a bit like living with a lie. By confronting this 'threat', it strangely removes the power it has over you.

By taking action, the worries and and the fears, whilst being acknowledged - are no longer holding you back. They no longer have the power that they once had.

Make no mistake - your inner voice - will never totally go away. But you can start to alleviate those thoughts and fears, so that they not longer hold you back.

In any given situation - we can train ourselves to think differently. In the case of fear - you can learn to think more positively. Here is an exercise that help you do just that. : CLICK HERE :