I’m using this video to continue processing and sharing my thoughts about the article, Getting Rid of Fear, which came about when a client who had just finished the course, Transform Fear Into Action, said, “You can’t get rid of all fear.”
My first response is, when you say, “I can’t,” you have stopped progress, you have closed the possibility, the options — you’re no longer open to possibilities. And I think that when you stop with the “I can’t,” and shift to “I can,” then we’re having a whole different conversation.
There’s nothing to talk about when you say I can’t. “I can’t get rid of all fear.” OK, conversation’s over. You’re right. But if you think of fear as an onion with all the layers of thin skin, and meat, and all those layers, and if you think about peeling them back one at a time, versus cutting to the core immediately — I guess the size of the fear makes the difference — but, it’s a more manageable emotion when you think of it as a layered onion.
Small fears may be able to be processed in a snap. There’s enough desire to get rid of them, to process them — like that. Bigger fears, you do what you can. One layer at a time, even several layers, and then when it gets too difficult, too uncomfortable, pause. But as long as your attitude is “getting rid of this fear”, then you will. It may take time. I don’t know if we’re talking an hour, a day, a week, 10 years, whatever. But with the attitude of “I’m going to — I can,” then you will progress.
Now let’s say you’ve gotten rid of a fear, and you turn the proverbial corner, and there it is again. What it says to me is that you got rid of as much as you could, and now it’s time to take back some more layers. It must have been a really big fear, and you hit resistance. And that’s part of being human. But as soon as you see that fear again, then you can start peeling it away again. And maybe now, because you’ve grown so much, and you are more experienced with transforming your fears into action, maybe now you can go more layers deep or get straight to the core of that onion, that fear, and finally process it all.
But don’t be hard on yourself if it takes time. Don’t give up, and please don’t say after you’ve been working on this a while, “Well, I guess it can’t be done,” because then you’re right. You’re done processing that fear, done transforming it into an action to something useful in your life.
How long are you willing to be held back by that fear, the inconveniences it may raise in your life, the blockages from living your life to its fullest? Keep going. Maybe I’m naive, but I do believe that when we want to, and with our own efforts, the efforts of community, therapists, people in our lives, that, yes, we can get rid of fear.
And in bringing up community, community is what helps us be resilient. Community helps us process emotions that are too big for us to do alone. It’s comfortable having people to process with. So, use all of your tools to transform your fears into action, to get rid of those fears.
And thinking of the fear — the former fear, the fear in the past — doesn’t mean it’s still a fear with you today. It means it’s part of your history that you’ve lived, and you’ve succeeded, maybe one step at a time, but progress is good.
So, yes, I still believe — more firmly than ever — you can get rid of all of your fears. All of your what I call Submission Fears, what some of my students called irrational fears. So give it a whirl. Keep processing the fear like an onion, one layer at a time. Keep processing those fears, keep thinking “I can do this,” and see how successful you are.
Read the original post “Getting Rid of Fear?”