What Keeps You From Living Your Dreams?
During my career in London I was a designer for The Times newspaper, and I once asked one of the columnists the following question, “Out of all the thousands of letters you receive each month, what problem is most dominant in people’s lives?”
Her answer was shocking!
“It’s fear!” she replied without hesitation. “The one thing that keeps people from the life they dream of is fear. People live every day in their fear. They’re afraid of losing their wealth. They’re afraid of losing their loved ones. They’re afraid of being themselves. They’re afraid of growing up and being responsible. They’re afraid of making the wrong decision. They’re afraid of making a commitment. They’re afraid of life itself!”
Wow! When I pondered that quote I realized that the greatest fear, that keeps my sales and myself from succeeding, is not fear of failure, but the fear of success. It’s the fear of really making it! What people are most fearful of is really living! They fear giving life everything they’ve got when they don’t know the ultimate outcome.
The fear of living to the fullest may have paralyzed you, causing you either to never really try in life or, if you do try, to sabotage your efforts so you never have to face your fear of success.
Most people live their life in this fear bondage, and they aren’t even aware of its control on them. Fear is the one thing that can turn your dreams of financial freedom, loving relationships, a fulfilling and significant life into a pattern of procrastination, self-sabotage, and other bad habits.
Fear is the dominant problem in your life today. The two questions I had to answer in order to conquer my fear are the same two questions you will be able to answer after reading this.
Which fear has the most control over me and my behaviors? Is it the fear of failure, fear of rejection, fear of success, or all three?
How do I interrupt the bad habits that I have developed as a means of protection from this fear?
THE REALITY OF FEAR
Fear is human. It is part of every person’s life, exists in every success story, and is part of growing. Fear isn’t going away. Some fear is even healthy. In fact, God has a distinct function for fear. It is given to you to keep you safe and to keep you away from dangerous situations.
Let me explain. All people are born with THREE inborn fears. These three fears are:
Fear of falling
Fear of loud noises
Fear of abandonment
These inborn fears were given to you to help you monitor what goes on around you. Think about it, It is fear that gives you the powerful adrenaline rush so that you will have the ability to flee from a situation that is truly unsafe or the same adrenaline rush to fight to win.
Yes, fear is a gift, instilled in you to keep you safe, but it can also paralyze you if not faced.
WHAT DO YOU FEAR?
Commitment?… Rejection?… Responsibility? … Not measuring up?… Growing up?… Loss?… Confrontation?… Change?
I have never met a person who hasn’t had to face some degree of fear. In all of the mentors and successful individuals I met throughout my entrepreneurial journey, every one of them had a story about how they, too, had to deal with their fear. What I began to notice is how similar the stories were! The names would change. The circumstances were different. But the fear was the same, and very real.
All of these surface fears keep you from exposing the core fear, the true cause of the anxiety, depression, and destructive behavior that choke your dreams to death. These symptoms of fear can be conquered by exposing the core fear that hides behind them and breaking through the negative beliefs they represent.
When we confront our true fears, we are on our way to freedom.
The only way to beat your fear is to beat it to death with action!
– Leroy Ford
MINDSET FOR EMBRACING FEAR
When I took my first entrepreneurial leap, I was really scared. (And pretty much every single day since then, I’ve felt some type of fear.)
I was very comfortable in my corporate job, I had a steady paycheck, a very supportive team around me, and opportunities for promotion – I was set.
Taking my entrepreneurial leap meant giving all of that up, and having absolute faith in myself.
WHAT’S AT STAKE
The truth is, what was at stake for me if I didn’t take that leap was much bigger than any paycheck or the benefits my corporate job could provide. And it was definitely much bigger than standing by, continuing to let fear control my actions.
What was at stake was my freedom. My ability to grow. My future. My life.
Have you ever stopped to think about what’s at stake for you?
When I realized what was at stake for me – that was the exact moment I realized I needed to get out of the 9-5 world. It was in that moment that I believed there was something better out there waiting for me, and also, that I was the only person who was capable of getting it for myself.
Did I feel fear? Ohhhh… you better believe it! But I knew that in order to make an impact and create the life I wanted to live, that I needed to embrace my fear.
One of the biggest mindset challenges that I still face today – Almost 8 years after taking my first entrepreneurial leap, is one I know we both probably share: the impostor syndrome, which raises questions like:
Am I really qualified to be doing this?
Will anyone care about what I have to say?
What if what I create isn’t good enough?
That’s why today I wanted to share 3 Ways I’ve found to embrace fear in order to break through it. Because let’s face it, fear isn’t going anywhere, however, we do have the opportunity to change our mindset around how we react to fear so that it’s no longer something we allow to hold us back from making an impact and creating the life we want to live.
3 WAYS TO EMBRACE FEAR
Surrounding yourself with the right people on your entrepreneurial journey makes all the difference.
Having support is unparalleled, because when you feel like you can’t take that next step – when you’re doubting your capabilities and fearful that what you have to say won’t matter – your community will be there to help you move forward despite that fear.
2. BABY STEPS
Sometimes we set ourselves up for failure by looking at what it is we want to accomplish as something that is unattainable: That project is way too big; What if I try it and I fail?; or, I don’t know how to do that so I’m not even going to try…
We make excuses because we fear we won’t be able to accomplish this huge project or task that’s before us. but if we begin to look at our end goal as something we can attain through a series of baby steps, then suddenly it’s not so scary.
Instead of a huge leap from point A to point Z, break down the steps you have to take so you’re starting out with simply finding a way to make it from point A to point B, then from B to C, and so on.
3. FOCUS OUTWARDS
A lot of our fears are focused inward on ourselves:
“I can’t make a difference”
“I’m not good enough”
“I don’t have the knowledge”
“What if I fail”
Instead turn our focus outwards. Instead of putting the focus on yourself, focus on who your going to help. Think about the results of us not putting ourselves out there. When you allow fear to control your actions, it turns out you’re doing a great disservice to those who you could be helping.
If there’s one thing I want you to take away from this first step on our journey down of entrepreneurship or achieving a personal goal, it’s this. In order to make the impact you want to make and start creating the life you want to live, you need to learn to embrace fear. And whenever that’s feeling extra tough, just remember what’s at stake for you.
I’m willing to bet that whatever is at stake for you (time with your family; having to go get a corporate job, not being able to travel, feeling stressed out all the time) is much bigger than the fear you’re letting hold you back.
Today write down 10 things that scare you.
Then aim to do 2 of them this week, it will be a huge mental leap if you can pull off both, but at least aim to achieve one of the ten.
Leave a comment below, I’d love to hear your thoughts.
It’s Time To Rise!
Author | Speaker | Entrepreneur
Creator, Online Business Blueprint
Founder, Success Mentors Academy™
How To Start a Profitable
Online Business & Escape
The 9-5 Rate-Race Forever!