As humans, subconsciously it is in our nature to lean more towards the familiar than to steer into the unknown.
The reason why this happens is that naturally, although we long for more and fantasize about the uncommon, we're more comfortable where we feel the safest.
Taking risks goes against our natural instinct of survival so to guarantee our survival what often manifests to keep us in a safe environment is - fear.
Fear can wear many masks but it often shows up when we're having thoughts and desires of doing or achieving more, committing to something or making a change in our lives.
So, here are 4 Simple Steps to Overcoming a Fear:
1. Awareness and Identification
Figuring out what fear is holding us back is the first step towards overcoming it.
We can become aware of the fear by asking ourselves the following questions:
- Where does this fear come from?
- What is the worst thing that could happen? (the deepest fear within the initial fear)
- Does this fear really have a tendency to become reality or is it just an illusion?
If the fear has a tendency of manifesting itself in our lives as the result of what we're most afraid of, it is time to have a detailed look into our lives and our environment including, health, relationships and friendships, career path, habits and routines, nutrition and just our overall personality. By closely looking at everything our life consists of on a daily basis we are able to identify what's affecting us negatively so that we can remove it and exchange it for something better. This allows more room for improvement in different areas of our lives.
If the fear, however, is just an illusion, the only thing we need to do is to realize that the only purpose it serves is to keep us in our comfort zone just because that is what is most familiar to our subconscious mind based on previous experiences and decisions. Therefore it is easier to overcome an illusion by knowing that the outcome of our decision will most probably be positive. The only thing left for us to do then is to be brave and follow our intuition.
2. The River of Change
What usually happens when we try to overcome a fear is that we create resistance and come face to face with discomfort. This is completely natural as our subconscious mind doesn't really want to change and make you start behaving differently just because at this point it knows your usual behaviour patterns, thoughts, emotions and routines that it runs as a well oiled machine.
Imagine it like this...
A factory machine that is programmed to do one task and one task only and do it indefinitely, will only do that and it will do it well. If not reprogrammed and optimized for a different task, no matter what other thing you try and make it do it will resist and do the best it can to go back to its initial position and resume where it left off, doing what it does best. Reprogram and optimize it for a different task and give it a couple test runs and it'll naturally become impeccable in performing the new task.
So for example, if a person who has had many experiences where they felt confined and stagnant in a certain situation for a long time suddenly tries shift their life around and overcome their fear, that person will be faced with discomfort or the 'River of Change'. When we enter the 'River of Change', we are pulled by its strong 'current', usually manifesting as thoughts and feelings of insecurity and doubt, that's making crossing the river and completely implementing the change more challenging.
At this stage, people sometimes tend to let that 'current' win and go back to where they started resulting in yet another unfinished task and the experience of failure.
If a person, however, perseveres, pushes through and stays consistent throughout this challenging time, they will soon end up crossing the river and getting on the other side, which always consists of an abundance of amazing new opportunities and experiences in life!
In order to do so here's what you'll need.
3. The Virtue of Bravery
Besides perseverance, commitment, faith and trust, one of the most important virtues needed to overcome a fear is bravery.
Bravery is gained over time through the practice of courage. At the stage of overcoming a fear, the virtue we use is courage as this is not the absence of fear, but merely the ability to push through even when afraid. After facing our fears with courage enough times and getting to a place where the results of it are extraordinary, we start to finally realize that most fears are nothing but illusions and that some of the most beautiful things in life are on the other side of fear. This is where we evolve and instead of only being courageous, we become brave.
When paired with wisdom, bravery is one of the most powerful virtues making way to uncovering our full potential.
If you feel like you need to be practicing bravery as a virtue more often or you simply feel that bravery is the only thing missing and keeping you from going after what you truly want, we invite you to check out our VIRTU Bravery bracelet and think about using it as a reminder to help you get to where you want to be.
4. Practice Makes Perfect
At the end of the day, like with anything in life, just as we practice fear and feeling afraid of something by repeating similar thoughts, emotions and experiences we need to practice being brave and trusting that we'll reach the goals we set ourselves to achieve if only we commit to them completely. Declutter your life of whatever brings toxicity and imbalance and enrich it with whatever brings you closer to making your dreams come true.
Remember that not everything is as it seems and sometimes the only thing we need to do in order to release and overcome a fear is to simply allow it to unveil itself as nothing but an illusion with the role to keep you 'safe'.