Did I scare you? Why not? You know, some people are really scared by this face. I know, I know, you probably think it’s a very handsome face. But seriously, some people get freaked out when they see me.
That’s because different people get scared by different things. We’re all different people, and so different things scare us. The question, what scares you?
Think about that for a moment… Whatever it is you are scared of, I bet you like it. Yeah, you like it. In fact, you might even love it.
See, there’s always some “benefit” that fear gives us, whether we admit it or not. And before I go into the four steps you can take to overcome your deepest, darkest, fears, let me give you popular demonstrations of how much we love fear as a society.
What’s happening in October? That’s right, Halloween. That’s a celebration of fear! And then there’s people who wait in line for hours, and pay money for 30 seconds of, up/down, down/up, swirl/twirl, and bang! It’s the whacky roller-coaster. And finally, this an entire genre of entertainment, it’s horror films, that make millions of dollars by making you scared! And you like it. Actually, some of you love it.
So now is the time to take action. Turn to the person next to you and whisper to them one of your fears. Go ahead. If you’re watching this on video, press PAUSE right now, and go find somebody. This is important. If you’re not going to do this one little simple thing that takes 5 seconds, how are you ever going to overcome the real fears of your life? This is your moment to start the momentum of transformation. Share your fear now.
Now, we all have certain things that petrify and debilitate us. They prevent us from reaching our potential. How would you feel if your deepest, darkest fears didn’t stop you? What could you accomplish in your life?
Well, ladies and gentlemen, I am going to give you four powerful keys to do just that.
1. Feel It! So many times we try to repress our fear when the truth is that we want to feel the fear. I went up in a plane 10,000 feet. It was such a feeling of awe. I was scared, but I took a leap of faith and jumped! That feeling of free-fall I felt is like nothing else. How would that experience be if I felt no fear? Wouldn’t it be pretty boring? It would be like me just walking down the street. What would actually be its purpose? FEEL the fear.
2. Express it. Simply by sharing our fears with others, the fears subside. We become conscious of how irrational our fears may be when we talk about them. I went on an Outward Bound expedition where we went rock climbing on the side of a cliff. I didn’t think I would be scared with all the safety equipment, and the fact that I’m legally blind. But guess what? On that mountain, my leg started doing The Elvis. I couldn’t believe it. I talked to our leader about my involuntary bodily reactions and how it was phreaking me out. He told me that The Elvis happens to many people, and we had a great conversation. By communicating what was going on for me, I was able to master my, even unconscious, fear.
1. Feel it. 2. Express It. 3. Appreciate It. Our fears can give us signals to either prepare, or raise our confidence, or to change our strategy. When I started as an entrepreneur, I was willing to do anything and so attempted to sell home security systems door-to-door. That may not sound like a big fear to overcome, but it is when you are legally blind… I couldn’t see the door handles of various houses to open properly, or see people’s visual/facial expressions. I was scared of dogs, couldn’t fill in the order forms properly, and probably wasn’t the a poster child for understanding security. I appreciated my fear because it taught me to change strategies and become a different kind of entrepreneur. Who’s glad I’m not trying to sell you a home security system?
Feel, Express, Appreciate, and #4 – Use it! If you’re nervous, all you’ve got to do is smile. Then you look excited! You actually don’t lose your fear, you make use of it. I didn’t even know what dancing was until I was in high-school, and was so scared of dancing. I eventually took classes in jazz dancing, ballroom, and a number of other styles. And you know what? I’m still not very good. I haven’t “overcome” my fear. However, I’ve used my fear to feel more confident, have more of an appreciation for dance, and be more of a well-rounded person.
Ladies and Gentlemen, fear is a good thing. What are your fear factors? Being nervous and having those “butterflies” in our stomach is human, is natural, and it is fun. We don’t get rid of the butterflies; we just have the butterflies fly in a beautiful and elegant way. And when they do, you too can have your life flow and allow your fears to guide you to your destiny. Feel it. Express it. Appreciate It. Use it. Before you leave here tonight, ask yourself, “What am I going to do differently now?” Let’s love the world together…
[)anish /|hmed, blind visionary
P.S. Read the original Fear 1.0 article from January 2004.
4 Simple Steps to Feel the Fear & Do It Anyway!