It’s interesting as a parent, witnessing my children walk through their fears. Whether it be a drum performance by my 12-year-old daughter or my 10-year-old son giving a speech as he ran for Mayor of his 5th grade class I was impressed by their ability to manage their fears and “do it anyway”. As I supported them, I was reflecting on some of my own fears and how I have taken various risks in my own life, including moving back to Arizona with a one year old or the many, many times as a business owner. Fear is something that creeps in at various times and we have to know how to acknowledge this feeling, and continue to walk forward in our lives and not let the fear paralyze us.
We all have fears inside, and yet often function from a place of unawareness, dismissing, or not honoring the fears. Fear brings a level of aliveness and risk and that’s where courage and bravery come in. Let’s take an example of starting a new job or deciding to embark on a new business. What often comes to mind is the fear of failure, the fear of what others might think, the overall discomfort of uncertainty of what’s to come. What would it be like to acknowledge this fear? To let yourself feel it in your body and honor the butterflies in your stomach and the overthinking in your brain? People are often worried that they will get stuck here and become paralyzed. In reality, taking some time to journal, talking to a therapist or trusted support person, or simply allowing the feelings in your body to arise is more helpful. Honoring your fear, will typically result in the feelings moving like an ocean wave, a swell of intense emotion and then a release and calming feeling. From this place of calm, you can create more positive self-talk such as, “I got this”, “I will be ok no matter what”, and maybe even “I’m proud of myself for taking this risk”.
Being successful means taking risks and you can be guaranteed that some fear will show up as a result. This is normal and to be expected but it is also terribly uncomfortable. One reminder I give clients is that fear and excitement create the same physiological response in our body. Think about the experience of being on a roller coaster or watching a scary movie. Part of us knows that we are safe but our body responds with heart racing, sweaty palms, and panic. Typically, taking a risk brings both fear and excitement and it’s important to honor both.
This Post Written By:
Rachel Thomas, Owner, LMFT – Therapy With Heart
8737 E. Via De Commercio, Suite 200
Scottsdale, Arizona 85258
Phone: (480) 888-5380
Fax: (480) 203-2881