Do you struggle with fear? It is a complex emotion – one that we all face at some time in our lives. Fear can be experienced on many different levels: from that breath-stealing moment of surprise when something startles you, to my all-time favorite, the fear of regret. Even the bravest & most successful people have moments of being afraid.
Emotions like fear are really effective in guiding our behavior. If you take an objective look at it, fear is nothing more than a motivator – a force that directs your behavior toward a certain outcome. What might this look like? Consider these:
As you can see in these three examples, sometimes fear pushes us towards our goals (working hard and striving to reach a goal) and sometimes it drives us away from the things we want (avoiding intimate relationships). The first step is to figure out where you want to go! Once you do that, you can leverage fear as a powerful motivator.
How can you use this knowledge about fear to get closer to your goals? To increase your motivation, follow these steps. We will use fear of regret as an example.
1. Take some time for yourself
People are incredibly busy these days and we don’t take time to reflect every single day. However, when we do take down time to think and reflect, the fear of “what if” usually pops up. Take time daily to reflect and think about what you really want. It doesn’t have to be an hour, but make it a priority and set a consistent time that works for you. My designated time is first thing in the morning. Every day, I begin my day with mediation. This allows me to not only reflect but visualize what I want for my future.
2. Build up the fear of regret
Think about the goals, plans, or habits that you want to implement. Now fast-forward and imagine yourself one year ahead: what would it feel like if you haven’t realized your plan? How does it feel if you had missed achieving your goal? What if your habit never happened? Picture how your life would look if you missed out on valuable opportunities simply because you were too scared. How disappointed would you be? How much would you regret not taking a chance or giving 100 percent? Dive into these negative emotions of regret and disappointment for several minutes until you just want to jump up and start taking action in order to get rid of this negative feeling.
Don’t be afraid of negative emotions; rather, use them as ammunition – similar to a slingshot, go into those negative emotions and then shoot into another direction with full force and energy.
3. Take action now
In order to gain momentum through this exercise, take the first step right away. Make it a concrete action, preferably something that you have put off until now: like making an uncomfortable phone call, signing up for that big conference, or asking that certain interesting person to hang out with you…whatever your goal is, do it now!
What does this mean for you?
You may not have realized it, but fear is one of the most powerful behavioral motivators there is: use it to your advantage! Fear of regret is the one fear almost everyone has experienced. Consciously create the fear of regret to fuel your motivation. Use your negative emotions to reach your goals.
We want to hear from you. What is your biggest fear? How do you deal with your fears and what motivates you to act courageously and navigate through uncertainties?
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Christine Smith is Founder & CEO of smurkmedia.com. smurkmedia.com specializes in systematic processes to increase website rank & traffic through e-mail marketing, social media, seo, sem, ppc, and public relations. To learn more, visit http://www.smurkmedia.com.
This article is intended for informational purposes only. smurkmedia.com, nor Christine Smith, accepts liability for the content of this article, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided.