Community//

Fear is calling, are you listening?

Desire is delicious, but it takes more than simply wanting something to bring it into existence. And if a goal has been on your to-do list for quite some time, it's worth investigating exactly why.

Photo by Ian Dooley

Think about something you want from your life. Have you wanted it for a long time? Does it feel slightly out of reach? Desire is delicious, but it isn’t enough on its own to create a new reality.

Action is required, of course, but moving from A to B begins with a clear sense of your internal beliefs — and how they might be holding you back.

Got a great idea for a business? If you believe you’re don’t deserve success, you’ll sabotage your vision. Long for a loving relationship? If you think you’re not lovable, you’ll struggle to find one, and may even seek out unhealthy partnerships.

Fears run deep, forming during our early years, usually in response to unpleasant experiences we experience or messages we received from our parents, teachers, or other voices of authority.

For me, it was a message that I wasn’t good enough unless I worked very hard. As a result, I learned to equate my self-worth with external achievement. This go-getting attitude, while useful, proved a double-edged sword. When I worked as a journalist, I set my sights on having my byline in top magazines around the globe. When I achieved those successes, however, I rarely felt the pleasure of my hard work, but would instead move quickly to the next tick-box in an ever-lengthening list of goals. This work ethic followed me throughout my life and eventually led to repeated burnout and, ultimately, a deep reevaluation of my inner worth.

Today, in my work as a coach and psychotherapist, I see this fear of not being good enough repeated in many of my clients. Other widespread worries? Fear of abandonment, fear of rejection, fear of failure, and fear of success. Practically, these concerns show up as painful, sticky habits like procrastination, inertia, and self-sabotage. (Sound familiar?)

Thankfully, fear doesn’t have to be forever. Recognising it is the first step toward dismantling it.

Cast your mind back to that thing you want from your life. Say it aloud. Ask yourself what you’re afraid of and notice (really notice!) what comes up. Feel the response in your body. Then ask the question again. And again. And again.

When you feel a little bit nauseous, a bit dizzy, or feel a rush of shame or embarrassment around the answer, you’ll know you’re on the right track.

Uncovering our fears isn’t comfortable, but doing so allows us to welcome them more widely and dance with them until they start to loosen and shift. And that’s when exciting things begin to happen.

The Thrive Global Community welcomes voices from many spheres. We publish pieces written by outside contributors with a wide range of opinions, which don’t necessarily reflect our own. Learn more or join us as a community member!
Share your comments below. Please read our commenting guidelines before posting. If you have a concern about a comment, report it here.

You might also like...

Wisdom//

How to Excel at What You Do

by Benjamin P. Hardy
Community//

“Is fear of failure keeping you stuck in a lifeless job? Here’s 5 things to do.

by Vanya Lazarova
Community//

3 Steps To Conquering Your Fears Every Single Day

by Mia Vissichelli

Sign up for the Thrive Global newsletter

Will be used in accordance with our privacy policy.

Thrive Global
People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.

- MARCUS AURELIUS

We use cookies on our site to give you the best experience possible. By continuing to browse the site, you agree to this use. For more information on how we use cookies, see our Privacy Policy.