Last December, I was at the airport, ready to head back home from university. I scanned the information board looking for my flight number, only I couldn’t find anywhere near 2 in the afternoon. I checked the rest of the board for it, only to find that it a bit more at the top, leaving at a few minutes before 11. It was already 11. And when I checked my ticket, it only confirmed my fears: I had remembered my arrival time as my departure time, and I had missed my flight.
I had never been more terrified in my life.
Not only was I alone in the airport, it was an airport in another country, and I had also just missed my flight. This was something I never imagined happening to me, and I was panicking so hard I probably would have cried if that panic didn’t last for more than a minute. And it only lasted for such a short while because I was standing there, feeling that horrible panic coursing through me before I recognized that I had to move forward and do something to fix my situation instead of just being scared. Within minutes, I was talking to someone to book another ticket because I had immediately gone to the information desk.
And this reaction to fear was something I had developed over years and years of mistakes. I have some pretty bad ones, but with a lot of reflection, I realized that mistakes were only a big deal when I made a big deal out of them. And I did this by lingering on the mistake and letting my panic and terror grow, instead of immediately doing what I can to fix it. And the small act of pushing myself to act when I’m gripped by fear has paid off so many times in my life, including when I missed my flight.
But it’s also been so important when I apply it to my ideas and dreams. I’ve spent so much time starving my ideas of my attention because I was scared that it was too hard or too ambitious. And over the years, that fear has never gone away because as I get better, my dreams get bigger, which is why I believe it’s impossible to ever eradicate fear. The only thing you can control is how you act.
Because let’s be honest, we’ve all been at that point where we come up with a big, awesome idea, and a second later, you’ve made 99 reasons for why you shouldn’t work on it. We’re all used to giving our fear the space to grow and thrive, but I don’t see the point in doing that. Why not devote the space you keep in your brain for fear to your dreams and your ideas? You should be starving your fear, not giving it all your time and attention.
So, how do you starve your fear? I’ve found that starting is the most effective way to starve my fears. More often than not, I’m ridiculously afraid of taking the first step. I usually end up obsessing so much about getting the first step right to the point that I never end up actually taking that first step because the more time I spend on one thing in my head, that just means there’s more time for fear to take over. But when I started pushing myself to actually act on my ideas first and obsess later, I didn’t have any time to be afraid anymore. I was too busy to even let fear exist.
But this also doesn’t mean that you should ignore your fears completely. When you indulge in too much of it, you end up never doing anything, but your fears are also the best place to start for deciding on what to act on. For example, I want to attend the seanwes Conference, and the thing that scares me the most is that I can’t afford it. So, to fix that, I started thinking of the things that I can do to afford it.
And at this point, I was grateful that I had taken the Braver Goals course last year, and spoiler: I loved it so much that I signed up to be an ambassador for it, which means I make a little commission if you do choose to learn this system that really helped me in being a little more fearless. I learned this efficient way to achieving my goals, and it also made me rethink the way that I do things. I had such a big influence on how I’m working to achieve my goals right now. I think my favorite take away from it is realizing that I can use one goal to achieve another one. For example, I planned it so that a secret project of mine can help me achieve my goal of earning enough money for the Conference ticket.
Essentially, I walked away from the course feeling braver about my ideas because I now know how to bring my ideas to life efficiently instead of trying to figure it all out on my own. That’s a lot less resistance to start, and getting rid of that barrier alone made back my investment on the course (and the course isn’t even over three figures!). I’d rather take time away from worrying to put toward making things happen instead of the other way around.
And please don’t forget.