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How to Face Your Fears

Keep your rational fears, and eliminate the irrational fears by examining them in the light of day.

By
Stever Robbins,
Episode #109

One way to overcome fear is to face it. I don’t mean to face fear by doing what I’m afraid of; I’m way too chicken for that.

One way to overcome fear is to face your thinking about it.

I face my thinking about fear. Since thinking is almost always what’s scary (leopard-print loincloth notwithstanding), it’s the scary thinking that needs to be exposed to the light of day.

Remember, I’m not a licensed psychologist, I’m a Get-it-Done Geek. If you have deep rooted issues, don’t do this except under care of your mental health professional. Find a comfy place to curl up, and bring your blankee or your pillow. Be safe.

Think of something you want to do but you somehow don’t ever do it. Ask yourself what you’re afraid of. If it’s something huge like, “I’m afraid the Evil Man will kidnap me again and keep me in a cellar for another 19 years,” pick something else. Save that one for your therapist. In the Broadway musical Wicked, Elphaba, the wicked witch, sings “Defying Gravity” and celebrates her courage to close her eyes and leap! I wanted to sing it at karaoke tonight … but I was too scared. Ironic? Totally! My unconscious is way crueler than yours. Your fear may be more mainstream: “I want to ask for a raise but I’m afraid my boss will fire me.”

Ask yourself honestly if the fear is reasonable. Has your boss fired other people when they asked for raises? If the answer is “No,” feel that. Your boss doesn’t fire people who ask for raises. You can ask and your boss won’t fire you.

Explore the Consequences

Next explore the consequences you’re scared of. This is when you bring out your blankee to hug. What are you afraid are the consequences of getting fired? Be honest with yourself, because this can be the scary part. “My boss will fire me.” And what will happen then? “And I’ll never be able to get a job again.” And what will happen then? “My husband, wife, significant other, and polyamorous family unit will all leave me!” And what will happen then? “I’ll end up crazy and insane, living on the streets, talking to my shopping cart.”

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