“Courage is fear that’s said its prayers.” (Dorothy Bernard, author) I decided voluntarily to change my career and lifestyle in 2006, after living and working in the same place for several decades. I was older, and I moved to take a career opportunity in a place where I didn’t know anyone. My friends and colleagues told me I was out of my mind and absolutely crazy, but they also told me how “gutsy” I was. I knew life as I had known it was going to change anyway, and it was time for a new chapter and adventure. I took the leap, and have never looked back. Fear is such a powerful and debilitating mental condition. It has kept me from doing many things. The unbelievable truth about fear is it usually is not grounded in reality. Read any psychology 101 book and it will tell you we build up most fears in our minds, and make them into mountains. Our fears develop from our experiences, traumas, and situations, which are usually unresolved over many cycles and parts of our lives.
Dealing With FearTo deal with fear realistically, I had to determine which fears were what I called GIR (Grounded In Reality) or NGIR (Not Grounded In Reality). This took years. I still have moments of paralysis, but they do not last very long. I focus on my capabilities, on the now, and on taking action. If fear is holding you back from doing what you want to do then take a fear inventory and rule out what’s real and what’s not. List the key fears you have now in two columns: Grounded In Reality or Not Grounded In Reality. Then, answer these questions with regard to each fear:
- Why do I have this fear?
- What’s the worst that can happen?
- Who can I reach out to for encouragement and support?
- Do I need some professional help?