4 Strategies to Overcome Fear Paralysis

The Diagnosis

Hart Connections Fear ParalysisI know we’ve all been there…

Something is on your brain and you know it’s what you need to do next, but for some reason, you just CAN’T seem to step forward and do it.

I call it fear paralysis.

It probably doesn’t show up in the DSM, but it’s a real condition.

I know because I’m not the only person I know who’s been afflicted by it.

And it seems to be a recurring condition, because just when I think I’ve beat it, it flares right back up when I need to take my next step.

Right now, I’m feeling like it’s about time for me to start up a group coaching program.

I’ve had so many people come to me over the last 6 months and no matter their background, situation, or reason for reaching out to me, the solutions are always the same.

It definitely feels like time for a group.

Add to that the fact that I’ve been becoming an expert on some of the most amazing tools on the web for video and phone conferencing.

Could be time for a group

I’ve been asked to co-host and join several other online coaching groups and activities and the feedback I get is…”Bridgett, you should do this more often”

Probably time for a group…..

So, why hasn’t it happened??????

Fear Paralysis –

Scared Afraid Man Wrapped in Red Fear TapeI’m  afraid that what I produce won’t be perfect or might look bad or somehow let people down.

I’m afraid that I don’t really know what I’m doing.

I’m afraid that people will judge me.

I’m afraid of failure and rejection.

Ultimately, that’s what we’re all afraid of, right?

Rejection: the most horrible feeling in the world.

 

So, what’s the cure?

Or at least, how do you lesson the symptoms?

 

A Multi-Tiered Treatment Plan

As any good doctor should tell you, the best approach is a multi-layered one.

We are complex creatures with a lot of intricate systems working together seamlessly.

To treat just one part of the problem is inefficient and can actually cause more damage in the long run.

So, here’s my prescription for dealing with Fear Paralysis

Intentional Activity

Ready, Set, GoSince our condition is paralysis, or lack of movement, the first and most important symptom we want to address is action.

No matter where I’m at in my paralysis, action is what starts my progress out of it.

Even a tiny step gets the ball going, so the question is “What one thing can I do today?”

DO IT.

Stop whining and get busy!

It takes just as much effort to talk about being stuck as it does to get unstuck.  (Says the girl writing a blog post about it! lol)

It doesn’t matter if your product is perfect, it matters that you keep moving forward.

Trust me, no matter how much you plan, the first version of whatever you’re trying to do will not be as good as the 10th version.

You’ve got to do it to know how to improve it.

Strategy 1:

Consistency is key with healing and growth, so set aside time each day (a reminder on your calendar can do wonders!) to work on your goal.

Put your goal right in the title of the reminder so you literally have to ignore your own dreams during your waking hours to not follow through.

And be okay with just getting one thing done a day.

If you can only set aside 10 minutes a day right now, that’s great.. do 10 minutes every day.

Until you can do more….

Talk Therapy

Talk Therapy Hart ConnectionsDoctors who treat cancer will tell you, there is ABSOLUTELY a connection between a persons outlook and attitude and their likelihood of a long and healthy life.

So why do we skimp when it comes to care of the mental and emotional side of diseases like fear paralysis?

Take care of your brain space by talking about both your successes, failures, and fears with people you trust and who will edify you.

If you don’t know what edify means, look it up.

If none of your friends edify you, don’t talk to them about any of it.

Find a professional therapist or coach.

Strategy 2:

Start building a group of mentors and advisors.

Remember that for them to truly mentor you, they should have already achieved what you are trying to achieve.

Reach out to at least one person that you have a lot of respect for and ask if you can take them to coffee or lunch.

Or offer to volunteer for their upcoming event, or buy them a pair of shoes.

Perhaps you just need to make a call to that person you already talk to.. a sister, a therapist, your coach or your mom, maybe.

This week, make that call.

Reach out.

Let it out.

Let good stuff in.

Medication Regimen

Happy MedicineWell, I’m not a huge fan of chemical medications, so instead, let’s focus on the BEST medicine… Laughter!

Include in the concept of laughter any activity that helps you feel light-hearted and joyful.

Some of my favorites include a few minutes of gratitude, a cruise with my husband, an hour at the gym, gospel music, or a cuddle with my dogs.

What do you do that makes you feel great?

Or, maybe, what did you used to do that made you feel great?

These things need to be a regular part of your regimen if you’re gonna get full benefit from them.

Strategy 3:

When you’re becoming overwhelmed by your fear or by thoughts of self-doubt, stop everything and “take some medicine” immediately.

Go for a walk, turn on your favorite music, or close your eyes and begin to name the things you’re most thankful for.

Do anything that you love to do – take some photos, draw a picture, write a poem, ride a bike or say a prayer.

I think you get the point.

Stop negative thinking dead in it’s tracks by changing directions for a short period of time.

Come back to your problem once you feel refreshed.

Starve the Fear and Feed the Dream

Fresh Vegetables, Fruits and other foodstuffs.A strong nutrition plan is fundamental to growth.

No one can deny that our diet affects our health.

Our intake affects our output.

The same is true for your idea, your goal, your dream, and ultimately, for your entire life.

In order to overcome fear paralysis, we have to starve the fear and feed the dream.

The quickest way I know to starve fear is to go straight for the throat by facing the fear head-on.

And the dream will take a balanced diet of spiritual, physical, emotional, and financial investment in you.

Strategy 4:

Ask yourself what exactly you are most afraid of right now. What has you paralyzed?

Now, that is the goal.

Set a date on that and work backwards from there to determine what the one thing will be that you’re going to do today to accomplish that goal. (See Strategy 1)

I highly recommend the Failure Olympics app from AppSumo if you just need to practice kicking fear in the face for a day or two.

To balance the starvation out with nutrition, you have to feed the parts of you that will bring you to that dream.

Each week, invest in yourself in 1 – 3 ways spiritually, physically, emotionally, and financially.

For example: attend a faith service or commit to reading a favorite book or listening to a spiritual CD, go to the gym or climb a mountain, find one person to help or some where to volunteer, set up an automatic savings plan or find a way to increase profits…

Give yourself at least one objective in each category each week to continue to maintain a strong foundation for your dreams to rest on.

 

The Prognosis

The prognosis is good.  If you follow the treatment plan, you’ll find your paralysis can literally be cured almost instantaneously.

What you’ll also find out is that things don’t happen overnight.

And that’s okay.

They happen one step at a time.

Keep following the plan and keep reaching for that dream and you will overcome your fear paralysis.

See you there!!!

In the spirit of this fear, I’m writing my first e-book. If you want a free copy of it as soon as it’s done, give me your email address below. 🙂

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