How to Recognize Your Fears & Overcome Them
Feel the fear and do it anyway.
This is a decision that so many of us must choose to make at some point in our lives. And that is because fear is a natural part of life.
The human who does not experience fear in their lifetime does not exist. When we feel afraid, it is our response to the unknown, to something we feel can hurt us, and to something or someone that we feel can lead us to be vulnerable.
But how can we tackle these fears inside and learn to overcome them? We’ve got the solution for you!
The Relationship Between Vulnerability & Fear
Vulnerability is something that, again, we all experience. But the way we each deal with our vulnerability is an entirely different matter.
Some people build walls and barriers around themselves to prevent themselves from feeling vulnerable. Others cautiously maneuver through life, always ensuring they are three steps ahead so that their vulnerability isn’t exposed. Yet, there are other people who wrap themselves entirely in vulnerability and let the fear control them in other ways.
The key to recognizing our fears is acknowledging where we are vulnerable and then dealing with these vulnerabilities in a healthy way.
How to Identify Your Fears
Identifying fear is not always easy. Our subconscious mind is filled with so many different elements that we pick up along the way as we journey through life, and often, intense shadow work is necessary to identify your fears.
However, there are ways and means to do this.
1. Recognize Shadow Emotions & Take Time to Analyze Them
Shadow emotions are very often linked to fear. On the darker side of us, shadow emotions are often related to negative emotions, including fear, greed, selfishness, or even the desire to have more power.
It is important to recognize not only the positive emotions within ourselves but also these more harrowing feelings.
You might want to brush up on: What Are Shadow Emotions?
2. Keep a Fear Journal
Every time you feel fear, write down the situation and what triggered it. You may realize that many of your fears result from past experiences.
For example, if you have experienced a bad relationship where you were betrayed or a spouse was unfaithful, the fear of relationships may develop. This can result in trust issues, jealousy, and commitment issues, some of which you may have even been unaware of yourself until the fear itself is triggered.
3. Try Hypnotherapy
Hypnotherapy is an intense form of meditation, usually performed by a trained and qualified psychotherapist or hypnotherapist.
With their guidance, you can help you gain access to your subconscious mind and identify where your fears lie and why. Only through recognizing the fear and understanding it can it be dealt with effectively.
How to Conquer Your Fears
It may be strange to take such a linear and rational approach to tackle fear because it is such an intense emotion. Further, emotion and logic can be very challenging to find a balance between.
But in instances where fear is so overpowering that it takes over yourself or your life, it is essential to apply the rational mind to overcome it. It takes practice, dedication, and courage. But it is something anyone and everyone is capable of doing.
As we’ve discussed, identifying fear is the first step. The second is conquering it. This part can be challenging but can be done with persistence and a good dose of courage.
1. Analyze the Fear in its Entirety
After identifying your fears, it is time to ask yourself the following questions:
- Why do I feel this fear?
- What has happened to me to cause this fear?
- What solution is there to stop this fear?
So carrying on from the example of being betrayed in a past relationship, how might you identify your fear?
You’ve discovered you have a fear of being betrayed again, resulting in the trust issues you may display from time to time. So to analyze the fear in its entirety, you would first identify the betrayal in the relationship.
You may be feeling:
- Guilt (“This is all my fault.”)
- Resentment (“They betrayed me, and I will never trust anyone again!)
- Paranoia (“If I let someone else in, they could betray me too.”)
- Low self-esteem (“They betrayed me because I am not good enough.”)
In this instance, this is where the fear becomes irrational because there is nothing to suggest the new person would betray you unless, of course, you see the warning signs.
Here, the fear becomes a protective barrier, which is actually how fear operates in its healthiest state. However, where there is nothing to suggest this, it can lead to irrational behavior which you may or may not recognize. In most instances, however, it will be destructive in some way.
You might also find yourself unable to be vulnerable with others.
2. Use the Power of Positivity
Recognizing that the betrayal was not your fault and acknowledging that you are good enough is the first step to overcoming this fear.
The next is working on conquering it. Facing your fears directly is one of the only ways to overcome them.
In the case of low-self esteem, you can utilize positive affirmations and reminders to help build it up again. Remind yourself every day of your wonderful qualities and how much someone out there deserves you.
You might also want to adopt a positive daily mantra or routine to help remind yourself why you are worthy and deserving of living a life free of your fears.
If you are looking for a list of positive affirmations, check out Override Negative Thoughts With a Ridiculously Positive Affirmation.
3. Don’t Let Fear Control You
This can apply to any fear, of course, and depending on the fear, it will generate different types of action in order to overcome it.
There will always be the niggling voice of doubt telling you that you can’t do it, but that is just the fear talking–the fear wants to control you. Don’t let it!
Take your power back from the fear and remind yourself that you do not have to live in its imprisoned walls. You deserve to be free and happy. And ultimately, you have the power.
You Have the Power to Overcome the Fear Within
For all of us, fear is something we experience. Some may experience it more frequently than others, but it is something no one can escape from.
The lesson we must learn is not to avoid fear.
Instead, we must intentionally choose to deal with it: we can choose either to let it control and consume us. Or we can use it to take back control and become the master of our fears.
A healthy dose of fear every now and then is perfectly fine. Fear can be an excellent mechanism for protecting us and ensuring we are safe. But when it becomes overpowering, all-consuming, and irrational, this is when we have a problem.
Hopefully, this article will help you conquer the fears that lie within. Remember, fear exists in the mind, and your mind belongs to you.
How will you go forth to conquer your fears?
Related article: How to Use an Oracle Deck for Shadow Work