Fear is a universal constant. Each of us considers and experiences what might be or what might not be, what we can and cannot change, and how the world will see us after every choice we make.
All of us, no matter how experienced or accomplished we may be, have fears that can hold us back. It’s part of our shared humanity.
If we let it, fear can be a helpful guide, propelling us towards the things we really want from life. However, worry, anxiety, and fear of failure can also hold us back.
Because of these fears, we may be tempted to see if the decision will ever get clearer and easier to make, to wait for the best moment, to plan and prepare a little more before making the jump.
Whether it’s starting our own business, asking for a salary raise or promotion, lifting heavier weights or training for a marathon, saying hi to this guy or girl we fancy and ask them out, and many other things in life … the fear of failure can cripple us, if we let it.
But while we are waiting, life is passing us by: time does not stop ticking. The quality of our life will radically change depending on whether we are willing to continue to face those fears, and move through them, or not.
“We spend precious hours fearing the inevitable. It would be wise to use that time adoring our families, cherishing our friends and living our lives.” (Maya Angelou)
We must learn to dance with our fears and embrace uncertainty, to rise every day with the feeling and belief that we will conquer, to attempt what is not certain. Certainty may or may not come later. And if we wait for certainty, we loose opportunity!
One Life & You Tip: You can overcome the challenges that spark the fear in you by learning, practicing and visualising our success. Keep befriending your fear by exposing yourself to your insecurity, vulnerability and discomfort. Push your boundaries, leap out of this beloved comfort zone, be curious and uncomfortably exited about trying!
“One never goes as far away than when one doesn’t know for sure where he goes” (Christopher Columbus)
The greatest risk in life is probably never daring to take any risk and allowing ourselves to die slowly inside whilst still alive, to live so cautiously that we might as well not call it a life at all.
“I also feared boredom and mediocrity much more than I feared failure. For me, great is better than terrible, and terrible is better than mediocre, because terrible at least gives life flavor.” (Ray Dalio, Principles: Life and Work)
Life is made of experiment, adventures, novelties, discoveries, chances we take and luck we provoke – dare to explore and to get above your fears of new challenges and the unknown!
“Imagine that in order to have a great life you have to cross a dangerous jungle. You can stay safe where you are and have an ordinary life, or you can risk crossing the jungle to have a terrific life. How would you approach that choice? Take a moment to think about it because it is the sort of choice that, in one form or another, we all have to make.”(Ray Dalio, Principles: Life and Work)
Remember, fear doesn’t exist anywhere except in the mind. Fear is a self-fulfilling prophecy.
If you deeply desire something and the only thing standing between you and your dreams is fear, you must just go for it.
“Action may not always bring happiness, but there is no happiness without action.” (Benjamin Disraeli)
Taking action is the only solution. Don’t wait around just do it. Believe in the One You and make the most of your One Life!
Here are some specially curated inspirational talks to empower you to dance with your fears and embrace the uncertainty inherent to life!
Why You Should define your fears instead of your goals
The hard choices -what we most fear doing, asking, saying- are very often exactly what we need to do. How can we overcome self-paralysis and take action? Tim Ferriss encourages us to fully envision and write down our fears in detail, in a simple but powerful exercise he calls “fear-setting.” Learn more about how this practice can help you thrive in high-stress environments and separate what you can control from what you cannot.
Tim Ferriss considers himself a “human guinea pig,” since he’s consistently pushing himself out of his comfort zone to learn new skills. His experiences helped him realize something important about how people hold themselves back from achieving their dreams.
“Typically, people don’t overcome their fears because the fears are nebulous and undefined” (Tim Ferriss)
To get over your fears, you need to drag your fears out into the open and confront them.
Tim Ferriss developed a simple three-step process he calls “fear setting” to get past doubt that was holding him back.
Begin by thinking of a goal that is important to you but that you’ve kept yourself from attempting, and divide a piece of paper into three columns.
- In the first column, write down all of the things that could go wrong should your attempt fail. Think of the most terrible things possible.
- In the second column, determine ways that you can mitigate the possibility of each of those bad consequences from happening.
- In the third column, think of how you would recover from each of the scenarios you imagined and wrote in the first column.
“You come away from that exercise realizing, “Wow, I was getting extremely anxious and all worked up over something that is completely preventable, reversible, or just not a very big deal”” (Tim Ferriss)
Finally, in order to feel compelled to take action, consider these 2 questions:
- What are the outcomes and benefits of more likely scenarios?
- What is it costing you, financially and emotionally, to postpone action?
In this fun and inspiring talk, Tim Ferriss shows how one simple question is all you need to learn to do anything: “What’s the worst that could happen?”
What I learned from going blind in space
There’s an astronaut saying: In space, “there is no problem so bad that you can’t make it worse.” So how do you deal with the complexity, the sheer pressure, of dealing with dangerous and scary situations? Retired colonel Chris Hadfield paints a vivid portrait of how to be prepared for the worst in space (and life). It starts with walking into what he calls “a spider’s web”.
KAREN THOMPSON WALKER
What fear can teach us
Imagine you’re a shipwrecked sailor adrift in the enormous Pacific. You can choose one of three directions and save yourself and your shipmates …but each choice comes with a fearful consequence too. How do you choose? In telling the story of the whaleship Essex, novelist Karen Thompson Walker shows how fear propels imagination, as it forces us to imagine the possible futures and how to cope with them.
The 5 LESSONS In Life People Learn TOO LATE
This is a great video, and lesson #2 by Will Smith is to the point: Live without fear!
“The point of maximum danger is the point of minimum fear” (Will Smith)
“Lead by example, with hope never fear”
Michelle Obama urged us all to “Lead by example, with hope never fear”, in her final speech as US First Lady.
“The ONLY Way You SUCCEED is by FAILING!”
The only limits in our lives are those we accept ourselves and how FEAR is only a False Evidence Appearing Real
I had the immense pleasure and privilege to attend a talk by the exceptional story-teller and powerful inspirer Miles Hilton-Barber. The enlightenment, goose bumps, energy, laugher, and encouragement he gives us all to go after our wildest dreams despite hurdles, uncertainty and our fears, is simply mind blowing.
Miles grew up in Zimbabwe with normal sight, dreaming of one day becoming a fighter pilot like his father.
At 18, Miles applied to join the Royal Rhodesian Air Force, but to his disappointment he failed the eyesight medical.
At 21, both Miles and his brother Geoff were diagnosed with Retinitis Pigmentosa, a genetic eyesight condition that would lead to total blindness for them both. For the next 30 years, Miles lived with a kind of “victim mentality”, believing the established thinking that blindness was a massive barrier preventing him from undertaking any adventurous exploits.
At 50, Miles’ life radically changed through the example of his blind brother Geoff who set an exceptional World Record, becoming the first blind person in world history to cross an ocean solo, sailing from Africa to Australia unaided in a yacht that he built himself. Wow! What an amazing achievement!
His quality of life and level of success was radically transformed from there, not through sight restoration, but through changing his attitude to his blindness and to his fears.
This was Miles’ big “wake up call’” so to speak, for the first time understanding the life principle that the key to success in life is not our external circumstances, but our inner response to them: your “attitude is what determines altitude!”
Since then Miles set numerous world records undertaking extreme events across all seven continents of our world in the fields of mountaineering, desert and polar ultra-marathons, power-boat racing, scuba-diving, motor-racing and long distance, aerobatic and supersonic flying amongst other achievements.
His adventures include being the first blind pilot to undertake a 55-day, 21,000 kilometre microlight flight from London to Sydney, relying on revolutionary speech-output technology on his navigational instruments; man-hauling a sledge over 250 miles across Antarctica; completing “The Toughest Foot-Race on Earth” – 150 miles across the Sahara Desert; climbing to 17,500 feet in the Himalayas; climbing Mt Kilimanjaro and Mt Blanc; running the 11-day Ultra-Marathon race across China from the Gobi Desert to the Great Wall; completing the “Coldest Marathon on Earth” – the Siberian Ice Marathon; competing in the hottest ultra-marathon on earth across Death Valley in California; crossing the entire Qatar Desert non-stop in 78 hours without sleep; circumnavigating 38,000 miles around the world using 80 different forms of transport; setting the Malaysian Grand Prix lap record for a blind driver in a 230kph Lotus; setting a new British high-altitude record for a tandem microlight (20,300 feet) with -55 Centigrade open-cockpit temperatures; white-water rafting down the Zambezi River; completing more than forty skydiving jumps; cage-diving with Great White Sharks; being the first pilot to undertake a sortie of extreme aerobatics in a +600mph Hawker Hunter fighter jet with an ex-Red Arrows co-pilot; becoming the first blind person to do the solo kamikaze skeleton run down the 5G Olympic bobsleigh track in Lillehammer, Norway; being the first blind person to pilot a 340 BHP performance rated Zap Cat power boat in ocean time trials; being the first blind aviator to break the sound barrier, attaining a speed of Mach 1.4 or 1,060 miles per hour during a 90-second vertical climb to 50,000 feet in an English Electric Lightning fighter jet; and being the first blind person to participate in a drag-racing event, driving a supercharged machine at Britain’s Santa Pod drag track.
He now speaks at various events around the world; sharing the transforming life lessons he has learned along the way, typified by his life philosophy that “The only limits in your life are those you accept yourself.”
Here are some of his great talks!
“You can fail at what you don’t want, so you might as well take a chance at doing what you love.”
Jim Carrey gave the commencement address to Maharishi University of Management’s class of 2014.
“Fear is going to be a player in your life, but you get to decide how much. You can spend your whole life imagining ghosts, worrying about your pathway to the future, but all there will ever be is what’s happening here, and the decisions we make in this moment, which are based in either love or fear.
So many of us choose our path out of fear disguised as practicality. What we really want seems impossibly out of reach and ridiculous to expect, so we never dare to ask the universe for it.
Our eyes are not only viewers, but also projectors that are running a second story over the picture we see in front of us all the time. Fear is writing that script and the working title is, ‘I’ll never be enough.’
Your job is not to figure out how it’s going to happen for you, but to open the door in your head and when the doors open in real life, just walk through it. Don’t worry if you miss your cue. There will always be another door opening. They keep opening.
Oh, and why not take a chance on faith as well? Take a chance on faith — not religion, but faith. Not hope, but faith. I don’t believe in hope. Hope is a beggar. Hope walks through the fire. Faith leaps over it.
You are ready and able to do beautiful things in this world and after you walk through those doors today, you will only ever have two choices: love or fear. Choose love, and don’t ever let fear turn you against your playful heart.”