Getting out of our comfort zones isn’t easy to do, but those of us who know that growth is on the other side of it tend to push ourselves through fear anyway. That’s certainly one way to do it — but how do we rid ourselves of fear altogether so we don’t have to constantly be pushing against our own resistance?
Knowing that we have nothing to be afraid of on a conscious level doesn’t necessarily make it any easier to dace when our subconscious minds still deeply feel that fear, causing us to experience a wide range of emotions that trigger both negative thoughts and physical reactions too (like sweaty palms, stuttering, etc.).
By practicing mindfulness, however, we can make room for using our conscious minds to eventually penetrate our subconscious minds in ways that melt those stubborn feelings of fear away. Here’s how.
Allow yourself to feel your emotions.
Rather than trying to suppress what you’re feeling so you can simply push through what you need to do and then breathe a sigh of relief when it’s all over, make time well before you need to do whatever you need to so you can be in solitude, tune into yourself and allow your emotions to just be felt. If you can, try to put descriptive adjectives to your emotions of you can and even identify which body parts feel it.
Notice assumptions you’re making.
Once you’ve tuned into your emotions, start tuning into your thoughts as well — the images that seem to automatically play out in your mind and the stories you’re telling to yourself. Take some time to question each one of them. Are they absolutely true, or is your mind creating these images and stories? If your mind is creating them and thus making potentially false assumptions about the present or future, don’t try to change them — simply become aware of the reality that they only exist in your mind and don’t necessarily reflect truth.
Identify and accept what you’re fearful of.
As you become mindful of your thoughts and emotions, you should be able to identify how certain emotions trigger certain thoughts, and vice versa. This is how the cycle of fear works and explains how it can get worse when you’re unconscious of it happening. The only way to stop it from cycling over and over again is to either distract yourself, or more ideally — realize its happening and keep watching it until your awareness causes it to weaken.
Be kind to yourself.
When we become fully aware of everything we’re feeling and everything we’re thinking, we may be easily sucked back into our unconscious habits where self-judgment and self-criticism occur. If this is the case, just notice it, accept it, and shift your self-talk to something more compassionate. Rather than punishing yourself or even simply feeling sorry for yourself, treat yourself kindly, just like you would if you were offering friendly support to somebody else.
Visualize what you want as if it’s happening.
Once you’ve mastered the art of mindfulness, self-acceptance, and of course self-compassion, you’ll have everything you need to slowly begin consciously shifting your thoughts toward what you want to have as if you already have it, what you want to be as if you already are it, or what you want to happen as if it’s already happening. You’re not denying your fears or any negative aspects that may actually be real — you’re simply shifting your perspective.
Get curious about what’s to come.
Thinking positively and visualizing what you want puts you in line with abundance, and the last thing to do, believe it or not, is to surrender the rest to faith. Open yourself up to curiosity and to the learning process by going after what you want from a positive and optimistic state. Trust that in time, and in accordance with this inward work you will continue to do, the universe will bring you exactly what you want.
Follow these tips as often and as thoroughly as possible whenever you start feel fearful. This type of work has the power to slowly reprogram our subconscious minds in ways that rid ourselves of deep fears that stem from childhood and other past experiences that may have caused us emotional trauma.