When I dare to be powerful, to use the strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid – Audre Lorde
In How The Fierce Handle Fear, an anthology of 22 essays on fear, I contributed an essay on fear and career change. Naturally fearful and risk-averse, I overcame my fear of the change by keeping my eye on the vision of it. That vision of what could be, that hope of a more fulfilling path became stronger than my fear of the obstacles and potential consequences.
What is your powerful, driving vision that is more important than your fear?
I intend to spend my life going in the direction of my dreams, not in the direction of my fears – Jennifer White
Where can you dream more and fear less?
How can you take one step towards a dream that’s big enough to get it going but not so big you lapse into fear mode?
Dream tasks: read about it, talk to someone doing, take a class, do a project just for yourself, volunteer in that area…mark your calendar for when you will do any or all of these things. Pick an action AND set the deadline.
The key to success is to focus our conscious mind on things we desire not things we fear. – Brian Tracy
Is your goal attracting you to a better possibility or helping you avoid something?
Do you visualize the most positive outcome or focus on how to manage the downside?
There is definitely a place for acknowledging risk, planning for contingencies, and insuring against losses. But it is even more important to let your ideal outcome be your guide.
Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear – George Addair
If you are longing for something, whether it’s a different career, a new relationship, improved fitness, more money…there is fear standing in your way, otherwise you would have achieved it.
Maybe you’re working towards it, which is great, but you need to make a push or try a different strategy. Extending yourself might trigger fear. Trying something new might trigger fear. Or you might fear admitting that your efforts aren’t working.
Where are you stuck in achieving a goal?
How might fear be holding you back?
Take a quiet moment and visualize yourself making a push or trying something new. Don’t even try to change your behavior yet – just visualize. Picture yourself in your new behavior or strategy till it seems more familiar and less scary. Then give it a try.
Nothing could be worse than the fear that one had given up too soon, and left one unexpended effort that might have saved the world – Jane Addams
Some people are held back by fear – fear of failure, fear of success. Addams points out fear can propel us forward: we might instead fear not doing enough, not making a valuable contribution.
This Addams quote also calls on each of us to save the world. Our contribution might be the tipping point. We MUST continue sharing our gifts.
Where are you holding back?
For what dream can you expend an additional push, more inspired effort?
How would you act if you knew your efforts might save the world?