As I mentioned in my previous blog post, I’m a fairly risk-averse person.
I’m scared of things. I get nervous when I think about stepping out of my comfort zone.
But, as of recently, I’ve thankfully realized with full emotional conviction that these statements don’t necessarily need to be true. In fact, you have the power to will them NOT to be true.
You have the potential to completely liberate yourself from fear.
That’s a scary thought in itself, eh?
Don’t be scared! The world is your oyster. You are completely limitless.
If your intention is to be the greatest painter on the planet, you can do it. If you want to be a millionaire, you can do it. If you want to be the best mother in the world, you can do it.
There’s only one (extremely fickle) obstacle standing between you and your wildest dreams: fear.
Fear of judgment. Fear of poverty. Fear of failure. Fear of the unknown. Fear of…….
But here’s the good news: you can overcome any of your fears easier than you might have thought.
Believe me – if I can do it, you can too.
An intimate look at one of my fears:
I’ve always been afraid of not being employed. Societal pressures, cookie-cutter middle-class schooling, ignorance to alternative options, etc. are a few root causes of this fear.
I’ve been told my entire life that my only option was to go to university, graduate and get a stable job that pays well, and squeeze in time for my hobbies and passions on the side. This was the ideal model of success.
And I believed it. For 24 years. And I went over and above to take every necessary action to ensure I was positioned for this model of success.
Until I realized that I wasn’t fulfilled doing so. This was not success to me. I wasn’t happy, I wasn’t excited and I wasn’t a good fit.
And guess what: that’s totally fine! In fact, I would argue that it’s beautiful.
For what it’s worth, if you feel like a black sheep in whatever situation you’re currently in, I think you’re amazing and I’m confident that you will do incredible things in your life.
Embrace your uniqueness.
How I got over my fear quickly:
Okay, so you’re probably skimming this article to find the one easy trick that I so facetiously promised in the headline to bait you in to reading my blog (kidding, I love you for being here).
My apologies in advance if this easy trick is underwhelming. I wasn’t kidding when I used the qualifier “easy”.
Here’s the easy trick to reduce your fear of any scary decision: tell someone that you’re planning on choosing the scary option of your scary decision.
Just say it. Or text it. Or email it.
Just let it be known to another human being. And then listen to their response.
You’re going to be surprised with how they respond (depending on how objectively “scary” or drastic your decision actually is, of course.)
You’re likely going to be shocked at how casually they respond: “Yeah, go for it!”
Or how supportively they respond: “I think this is the best decision you’ve ever made in your life.”
The point is: your fear is probably less scary than you are making it out to be in your mind.
So ditch your fear and just go ahead. In fact, I’m inclined to say you should use your fear as a compass. If you’re scared of something, it probably means it’s worthwhile pursuing.
One of my mentors once told me that fear and excitement are opposite sides of the same coin. And I believe this wholeheartedly.
When I spoke with my former boss to formally announce my resignation, I was amazed at how little difference I felt before and after the conversation. It served as an interesting manifestation of how fickle is your perception of fear.
I realize that this post is by no means an all-encompassing solution to everyone’s particular situation. I’m just scratching the surface of a very complex and universally-experienced emotion.
And I’m speaking from a position of privilege on a number of measures.
My goal with this post was simply to share a tip that helped me, and could hopefully help you too. I intend to elaborate on this theme in future blog posts.
Thanks for checking out The Millenial Merchant and, at the risk of sounding tacky and jeopardizing the integrity of this entire post, I think it’s only appropriate to end this article with Franklin D. Roosevelt’s infamous quote: “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”