Fear of being gripped by panic can make you feel completely desperate, powerless, or might end up presenting a joyless life. But, life doesn’t end here! There are countless ways to overcome such scenarios. When you start working to overcome your fears, you are empowering yourself to live your dream life.
It is truly a horrible thing to live in fear. A person with anxiety issues is continuously living with fears that never leave him alone – not even for a minute! It would be there in the morning when you wake up, and it would be there when you go back to bed at night. Let’s first know to differentiate between anxiety and fear.
Difference between Fear and Anxiety
Fear is defined as an emotional state triggered by real danger when facing it, while a person feels anxiety from an image of trouble that is not present in that actual moment.
Fear is an instinctive emotion that helps get you out of danger (the fight-flight-freeze mechanism). It activates the sympathetic nervous system. It is a powerful emotion that serves you loyally – it gets you out of danger. And it can be exciting; think of your first dive or a parachute jump.
But sometimes, it controls your lives and may make you live in desperate situations, ultimately leading to living a dreamless life.
On the other hand, if we talk about anxiety; it is a feeling of fear, worry, nervousness, or apprehension with an uncertain outcome. It is actually the production of our images. And we have the power to change the projected images in our minds. Extreme anxiety may lead to body shaking and the duration of anxiety may be a few minutes to the hours and days. According to 2011 statistics of the US Department of State, Anxiety is a major contributing factor to heart disease.
So, focus on your thoughts and overcoming threats that are more likely to harm you for your well-being.
Tips To Help You Stop Living In Fear
Let’s start by naming your fear and fastening your seat belt to face it head-on without avoiding it or running away. If it is still difficult for you to break it, consider professional help.
Here are a few insights and practices that may help you to overcome your fears that start from dealing with your fears. This self-strategy is so powerful that will definitely end up in positive outcomes.
- Give a name to your fear and label it
- Accept feelings brought on by fear
- Consider the absolute worst
- Reframe thoughts of fear into something more realistic
- Work gradually on your fear
- Combat your fear by doing something courageous
Give a Name to Your Fear and Label It
It is imperative to clearly define your fear in simple terms. Otherwise, vague fear seems more significant in your head. It might be like, “I am afraid of appearing in the exam because I think I will not be able to get A-grade.”
In this way, you bring your fear to the surface and label it, and only then can you work on it. It would give you a direction or a plan to overcome such situations.
Accept feelings brought on by fear
When people feel fear, they usually avoid it, but it remains with you, keeps you hostage to what you are afraid of. The only way to set you free from this fear is to accept them and mindfully observe them.
- The time you feel paralyzed with fear, sit with it. Please take a deep breath, and let these sensations come and go without trying to push them away or avoid them.
- Stay mindful and steer your thoughts. Do not let your thoughts wander away.
Consider About the Absolute Worst
Reduce the power of your fear with the worst scenario. When you start thinking about the worst consequences, you weaken your fear. For instance, public speaking fear; consider what would happen if you did.
|Fear/ Situation||Worst Scenario||Self-Suggestion|
|Public Speaking||People might laugh or point||So what? Is that really bad?|
They will find a new thing to focus on and forget.
These all are chances. So I must try.
Reframe Thoughts of Fear into Something More Realistic
Tell yourself about your fear. Give your thoughts, give it a label, and do not let them free-floating without any identification.
Raise a question about their existence. Ask yourself that is there any evidence to support your claim? Then reframe it by using the new information.
- They probably do not laugh at me
- They may admire me
Work Gradually On Your Fear
To overcome your fear, you must work on it gradually. In this way, when you succeed, you will gain more confidence to face the next.
For example, if you are afraid of public speaking, then watch videos of a public speaker. Next, rehearse your presentation in front of your friends. You might then board the train.
Combat Your Fear by Doing Something Courageous
Make a list of the actions that give you confidence and bravery. Compliment yourself that if you can do such a task, you can do other things as well. This thinking pattern will empower you.
Try to give yourself a small and achievable task and gain more confidence in yourself.
If self-help strategies do not help you, do not lose hope of living a joyful life. Take the next step, make an appointment with your family doctor, and ask for a referral to see a mental health provider. A psychiatrist or psychologist can help improve your chances of successful treatment.
Hi, my name is Eva. I am currently practicing as a clinical social worker, that being my childhood desire. As a licensed therapist holding MPhil in Clinical Psychology, I am now on biomadam to provide the natives with the best family advice! Do you have any questions? See you in the comment section.