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Reframe your fears if you want to move them out of your way. Fears come in many forms. Fear appears in many shapes. Fears halt even the bravest of hearts when it is allowed to have a place. When you reframe your fears, you turn them from a block to a breakthrough.
Many years ago, I fretted to the point I determined to quit. It was the night before a big diving meet. I had been beaten rather soundly the last two times I had gone up against one of my opponents. This would be my last chance, and I did not feel confident in what I was bringing to the pool.
The fear of losing haunted me.
I called a friend looking for sympathy or cajoling. Instead, I got slapped in the head with a massive reframing moment.
“I’m afraid of what’s going to happen,” I told him. I shared my heart, fully expecting warm fuzzies in return.
“Then don’t,” he replied. He went on to explain that it was a choice. “Dive or don’t dive. Do it for you.”
I hadn’t framed it around the background of “for me.” I thought of my dad watching from the stadium seats. I thought of my teammates. I thought of my coach. I thought about what they would think.
When he reframed my fear and put it all in my hands, my fear began to fade. I wasn’t diving to beat her. I wasn’t diving to create a path to a future in the diving world. I wasn’t diving to impress others.
I was diving because I enjoyed it.
Fears will pop up and fears will also puff up (trying to look bigger and more powerful than they are). Most of the time the fears will be unexpected and equally unexplainable.
Fear will be – no matter how hard you try or how well you plan. Fear just is and it is different for you and different for me. The key is not to ignore fear or try to avoid fear but to reframe the fear in a way that allows you to move from being blocked to having your breakthrough.
I learned two things that night before the diving meet. The first was to never go to a pragmatist for warm fuzzies. The second thing I learned was sometimes the way to reframe fear is to recognize that you don’t have to.
Reframe Your Fear
Admit your fear. Write down your fears or concerns. Tell someone you trust about your fears. Share with an accountability group. However, you choose to do it find your way to get your fear out there. Fear has a way of withering when the light shines on it.
Dig for the roots. You can’t pull up a weed if you don’t pull up the roots. It may disappear for a few moments, but those roots you left behind will begin to push up again. When you know what really drives your fears then you will be in a position to weed them out.
Think about the workarounds (or work-thrus). Come up with a list of at least ten different actions you can take or things you can do differently. Knowing there are others ways can help to reframe your fear.
Remember your why. Why are you doing what you are doing? If you are doing it for anyone other than self it will be more of a challenge to talk down the fear (because you will also have to fight off the voices of those others that you are doing it for in the first place). Hold the fear up to your why.
Do it anyway. There is fear and there is apprehension (and they can feel similar). When all else fails and you have done all you can do to reframe your fear, step anyway. Fear will fade when courage pushes you forward.
Anytime we are doing something different from what we have always done, it can be uncomfortable. Being uncomfortable can give rise to fear. Even if there isn’t a good reason for it to show, fear still finds a way to make an appearance.
Don’t invest your limited resources trying to avoid fear or ignore fear. Instead, reframe the fear in a way that will allow you to turn your block into your breakthrough.