Every time I hear those three words in sequence, I feel an increased awareness and preparation for what may be up next. With that being stated, I pose the question, are you ready to move? Are you ready for the next phase of your life; to accomplish your goals? Ready? This is the opportunity of your lifetime to begin to identify what goals you would like to accomplish, dreams you would like to achieve, responsibilities you want to complete; now is the time for you to do what you have been thinking about. With a new year and a new decade, we have the opportunity to do something different than what we have EVER done before.
Sometimes it is easier for us to go into a new year doing the same activities as the previous year; however, if we want something different we must acknowledge our fears to make a move towards our goals. Let’s start by identifying what fear truly is and what it can look like. Fear is defined by Webster as, an unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous or painful. Sometimes, fear plays a major role in decreasing our motivation to complete each goal or dream. Fear can look and appear differently in us; feelings of low to no motivation, to negative self-talk. Many of us experience fear, especially when we’re faced with the prospect of doing something new. Fear can only defeat you if it paralyzes or prevents you from stepping outside your comfort zone. Fear can be used to our advantage: When self-doubts creep in, don’t become crippled by fear. Imagining the worst to intensify anxiety and convert it into motivation is a way to manage fear.
At its most basic level, fear can be categorized into two types: survival and irrational. Survival fear is anything you experience to help you stay alive such as the feeling when approaching the edge of a cliff or facing a predator. An example of irrational fear is when your dreams of becoming an artist, dancer, or teacher are thwarted by the feeling of grave danger. Once identified, appropriate steps can be taken to begin navigating through the emotion. Fear has the ability to limit you in every possible way. It can become hard to see beyond fear to other possibilities; focusing only on what’s in front of you. Despite the rational mind knowing that something is irrational, you need to understand and respect where you are in life and allow time and space for healing as needed.
There are different ways to manage your life and focus on your ability to move forward. First, you need to identify ways to implement the changes you need in your life; what you need and what you want to ensure is all done. When you begin processing your goals, try not to focus on how you’ll do it or any obstacles that exist; just imagine the possibilities and set your goals. Focusing on the negative or all the reasons why you will not achieve your goals, is a prime example of fear. Let’s work to reaffirm ourselves and change every negative statement into a positive one. Sometimes through the darkest skies, the brightest stars reveal themselves. Being confronted by the darkest of fears and accepting, confronting, and overcoming that fear, will provide the ability to learn, grow, and heal. Feeling fear is human, but I assure you conquering it will make you feel empowered, courageous, and determined.
Here is a helpful acronym: False Evidence Appearing Real
Monretta Vega, LPC