By Olga Zavgorodnya
Living life means different things to many people. When I say “Living your life”, I am referring to living your life in a way that embraces your dreams, contains your goals and aspirations, and validates your desires. Living a life that has been built by someone else is not authentic living. When you are not true to yourself, you let your life pass you by; before you know it, there is no time left for you to be you – you’ve spent it all being someone else.
Fear is the most frequent culprit robbing our ability to go through with manifesting our desires. Our fear of commitment, failure, and risks create a need to cling to consistency and routines – things we understand and have learned are “safe”. The irony is that our world is not built for consistency; it is designed for changing processes and adaptability. Nature adapts: plants, animals, ecosystems. Why do humans have such a hard time adapting?
It is almost uncanny how strongly we fight against change. As human beings, we must tolerate some ambiguity and unknowns in our future. Peace of mind comes once you expel the faulty belief that you can control everything and account for everyone. Accepting that you may not always have a solution and that some things will just be a surprise takes away from the pressure and dread. When your fears and worries dissipate, you have a chance to enjoy the present moment as it is – you have a chance to live your life.
Of course this is easier said than done. The first step is belief: in yourself, your strengths, and your patience. Have a positive mindset that life will move in your favor. Acknowledge the good that has already come in your life. Keep your thoughts positive and hopeful. Do not get stuck in self-pity. One can abide self-pity for a stage, but you must know when it is time to move on. Do not allow self-pity, fear, or hopelessness alike become a habit. You are the one who must embrace change and release your fear. Your freedom stands strong when fear is defeated, defanged, or diminished.
Ellen Hendriksen, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist at Boston University’s Center for Anxiety and Related Disorders (CARD). He recommends four steps to conquering your fears:
- Let it play out – Whatever situation you are in that is causing you fear before jumping to the worst case scenario in your mind – don’t. Instead, just watch what will happen before making it so much more intense in your thoughts.
- Find the Will – Find the strength to gather enough courage and just try to face whatever challenge may lie ahead. You may be surprised just how much you are capable of.
- Write it down and prove it wrong – Be your own lawyer, argue against why you shouldn’t be fearful – as you would for a friend if they brought a concern to you.
- Break them down – Break up your fears into smaller sections and defeat them one small fear at a time.
It is not easy to be tolerant and accepting of the negative things that happen to us in our lives. Unfortunately, they help us understand that time is a fleeting moment – you must not spend it in regret and agony. Your perspective is key! Have the courage to defeat your doubts because your dreams are worth the challenges that you may fear.
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