I read the following Jack Canfield article this morning. It’s a good general piece, but it’s also particularly useful for marketing folks that need new ways to test ideas, create intriguing copy, make money, test products, open new markets and innovate. Creativity is, after all, a leap of faith. It requires boldness and a healthy approach to fears. The article offers useful strategies for moving past fear and/or using it to guide your decisions and creations. I especially like the “taking a 2-year-old to the market” analogy.
Putting Fear in Its Place
by Jack Canfield
As you move forward on your journey from where you are to where you want to be, you are going to have to confront some of your fears. Fear is a just a natural part of living.
Whenever you start a new project, take on a new venture, or put yourself out there, there’s usually some fear involved. Unfortunately, most people let fear stop them from taking the necessary steps to achieve their dreams.
Confronting your fears is a very necessary step in achieving success.
There is simply no other way.
Fear can be a helpful emotion, as it tells you when you need to be extra careful, keenly aware, and cautious. Fear is not an emotion that is telling you to stop. In fact, it’s telling you just the opposite!
Acknowledging your feelings of fear helps you know when you are stepping out of your comfort zone. It points your awareness to areas where you could improve and grow.
Successful people also feel fear. Yet they don’t let it get in the way of anything they want to do–or have to do. They understand that fear is something to be acknowledged, experienced, and taken along for the ride. They have learned, as author Susan Jeffers suggests in her must-read book, to “Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway®.”
(Susan Jeffers has been a friend of mine for twenty years now, and her work, which is very powerful and transformational, has helped millions of people overcome their fears and move forward to create success in their lives. I highly recommend her as a resource.)
You see, fear is more of a signal that we should stay alert and cautious. We can feel fear, but we can still move forward anyway.
Think of fear as a 2-year-old child who doesn’t want to go grocery shopping with you. Because you must buy groceries, you’ll just have to take the two year old with you. Fear is no different. In other words, acknowledge that fear exists but don’t let it keep you from doing important tasks.
Also realize that so many of our fears are self-created. We might frighten ourselves by fantasizing negative outcomes to any activity we might peruse or experience. Luckily, because we are the ones doing the fantasizing, we are also the ones who can stop the fear and bring ourselves into a state of clarity and peace by facing the actual facts, rather than giving in to our imaginations.
If a fear is too great for you to overcome, try breaking it down into smaller challenges.
Try starting out doing the parts of the project that don’t scare you so much. You need to give a speech in front of a large group? Try giving your speech in front of a small group of people who care for you. Work your way up until you are able to feel the fear but still move forward. As you do, you will build your confidence and eventually you won’t feel fear surrounding those issues because you’ll have done them enough to count it as a skill.
As you move toward your goal, don’t attach yourself so much to the outcomes.
Keep moving toward your dream doing everything you can to create what you want, then let it go and see what shows up. Sometimes the universe will have a better idea in mind for you and present a better opportunity when you were expecting something completely different. Don’t let fear keep you from moving forward. Even if the horrible outcome that you imagined happens, the universe will always provide for you another way to succeed. So be on the look out!
Trust that no matter what occurs, you are smart enough and strong enough to keep looking for, and attracting, opportunities.
If you are willing to try new experiences in spite of your fears, then more new experiences will present themselves for you to try. And the more you try, the more you are likely to succeed!
For even MORE inspiration about overcoming your fears, you can learn from this Video Clip of Me on YouTubediscussing some tactics you can use right away!
© 2008 Jack Canfield
Jack Canfield, America’s Success Coach, is the founder and co-creator of the billion-dollar book brand Chicken Soup for the Soul and a leading authority on Peak Performance. If you’re ready to jump-start your life, make more money, and have more fun and joy in all that you do, get your FREE success tips from Jack Canfield now at:www.FreeSuccessStrategies.com