Confronting Fear

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As much as we may try to deny this reality (especially as men!), we know deep down that fear can be one of the main drivers of our behavior. Fear and anxiety can lead us to do some things we don’t want to do and make decisions that aren’t best for us. Think about it honestly and I’m sure you’ll see some of the ways that fear guides your decision-making process. Maybe it shows up as mistrust or suspicion when there is no legitimate reason to have those perspectives. Maybe it’s a story that you’re convinced is playing out in your life—whether that’s related to your marriage, health, or career. Fear, worry, and anxiety show up in some unexpected ways once we start digging into what is actually guiding our thinking and decision-making patterns.

If you’ve been able to identify a fear or worry that is affecting the way that you think or act, I want to encourage you to dive right into the middle of whatever that fear is. It’s tempting to try to sweep it under the rug, but we know that we’ve tried that approach plenty of times before, and it has caused us more pain and disappointment than if we had simply faced that fear. Instead of using that approach, I’m inviting you to dive right in and deal with it.

As intimidating as that might seem, that’s how you can move forward. It might be helpful to think back on some past fears that you have overcome only to find out that they weren’t as bad as you’d built them up to be. Remember the time that you had that tough conversation, and it went better than you had anticipated. Think about the sales call that you were dreading, but now that you make them a lot, rejection isn’t so intimidating any more. Think about the difference between how you felt the day you brought your first baby home from the hospital compared to each subsequent newborn.

When we can look back on the fears and worries that we’ve overcome, it can be a helpful way to remind ourselves that confronting our fears is often not nearly as awful as we’ve convinced ourselves that it will be. Then, take that first step, have that tough conversation, open up and accept help, start on that project, make that call. My guess is that you already know what your next step should be, so go ahead and take it. Don’t let fear hold you back anymore.