Overcoming Fear And Achieving Your Goals Starts With One Simple Step
POST WRITTEN BY
Career/Life Coach (CPCC, ACC) and founder of InnerBrilliance Coaching LLC, guiding high-achieving clients to get results with a lot more joy
Negative self-talk and general fears can quickly take over and leave us feeling paralyzed from moving forward in life. Letting fear run our lives can have an even more significant and long-term impact. We might give up on one of our dreams because we won’t even consider that it is possible to achieve. It’s easy to forget just how capable we are and that we can leverage techniques to move us toward our desires.
The simplest way to overcome our fears is by taking one small step or action. In fact, we can awaken so many possibilities in our lives just by stepping out of our comfort zone. Doing so on a regular basis primes our minds to do it in various situations. At first, we can practice in low-stakes situations so our minds can feel more comfortable taking chances with higher-stakes opportunities.
Take my recent ski experience as an example. After 20 years of never hitting the slopes once, I decided to give it a shot again. The experience was definitely a bit nerve-wracking at first, but ultimately, it turned out to be educational and electrifying. It was also effective in taking me to new heights in an unexpected way. Here’s what I learned — or is that re-learned?
1. Accept yourself. Meet yourself where you are. Accept that you might be afraid to do something, and take one small step to start. In my case, I took a beginner's ski lesson and quickly realized that I remembered more than I thought I would. Muscle memory is an amazing thing.
2. Honor daily fundamentals. Appreciate the daily things you can do (e.g., sleep, nutrition, exercise, etc.) that maintain your well-being. They provide a foundation of strength and energy that allow you to do anything. These things are what allowed me to stay vertical throughout my recent ski day.
3. Visualize yourself succeeding. In my case, I pictured myself gliding down the slopes. This relaxed my mind and allowed my body to do what it knows to do.
4. Allow yourself to identify with new possibilities. Let go of that old story that tells you that you can't do something. I let go of telling myself that I'm not athletic. Instead, as I glided down the slope, I said to myself, "I am a skier."
5. Surround yourself with a supportive community. It's great to have a tribe encouraging you and sharing helpful tips along the way. I felt calm and supported to have my friends around me helping me out and telling me what I did well.
6. Ask “what if?" When I started to feel fear or negative thoughts creep in, I’d flip those thoughts and ask, “What if I could do it?” This simple re-frame shifted my mindset and made my time on the slope feel like a fun game versus something I might not be able to handle.
Above all else, remember to have fun. The experience could inspire you to push your limits in other areas of your life. Being able to ski again made me feel more confident and like I could conquer even more obstacles. After that ski trip, I implemented a strategy to grow my business and took a step toward evolving an important relationship in my life.
So, what is one small step you can take to get out of your comfort zone? And how could you practice the techniques above to maintain a sense of adventure and possibility for your life?