We have often said that if you push yourself out of your comfort zone just a little each day, life will be more fulfilling, exciting, and you’ll gain more confidence. Feeling fear is natural but having anxiety to the point that you feel paralyzed can stop you from living life to the fullest.
The past year or so has heightened that anxiety in everyone. I know that we have lost a lot of confidence feeling uncertain about our future, however, as I look back on many obstacles in our life, we have found that when we have taken a chance to make a change, the outcome has always made our lives better. We are not saying to throw caution to the wind but if there is something that you really want to do but feel too much fear to take the next step we are here to help calm your nerves and take a leap to a better life.
Tips to Help you Face Your Fears
How do we get over our fears? Here are some of our tips.
Take Baby Steps
When facing your fears, don’t go beyond what you can handle. If you have a fear of small places, scuba diving in a cenote in Mexico may be too much. If you have a fear of heights, perhaps bungee jumping should be taken out of the equation. Instead, go for something a little less traumatic. For someone with mild claustrophobia, try booking a fun night out in an escape room with your friends. If you have a fear of heights, why not go to the public pool and jump on the diving board and then work your way up to the high dive?
Maybe you’ve always wanted to try scuba diving, but it’s scary going 30 feet underwater, try snorkeling first to get your feet wet. Rock climbing or bunjy jumping might be too much for you, but what about rappelling or ziplining over the jungle? It’s still a thrill, but not quite so extreme.
Have a Cheering Section
When I did the polar plunge in Antarctica I was terrified of the freezing water. Having friends as a support group, made me feel so much better. With their positive energy surrounding me, it made me feel safe and gave me the confidence to jump off the platform into sub-zero water. If I were to try it alone, I probably would have chickened out.
Whenever we’re afraid, we focus on positive thoughts. “People do this all the time, I’m going to be ok.” This has helped me jump off cliffs into icy waters when I really didn’t want to do it. This has helped Dave lead the way through a jungle path filled with spider webs on an early morning hike.
We both tell ourselves that people do this every day and have lived to tell the tale. It’s not like we’re riding a wing suit through a narrow canyon, we’re regular people that may be stepping out of our comfort zone, but we’re going to be ok. The mind is powerful and if you think positively, you can overcome some fears.
Do Something That Scares You a Little Bit on a Regular Basis
People think Dave and I are superhuman and not afraid of anything. The truth is, we’re afraid of everything. We’re afraid of failing, of not making it through an epic hike, or the fear of the unknown. When we trekked the Missinaibi Headwaters in the dead of winter, we were terrified of walking on frozen lakes, sleeping outside in -30? weather and having the stamina to make it through the 100km trek.
If we hadn’t done so many other things that scared us in the past, we wouldn’t have been able to face this challenge. It would have looked impossible. But because we’ve done so many things that scare us each day, we knew that if we stayed focused and pushed through, we would probably be ok.
Admit When you Are Afraid
Many times we think we are the only ones that are afraid in a situation but often, once I announce that I’m nervous or afraid, everyone else agrees. Whether it’s been sitting on a boat waiting to get in a cage to dive with great white sharks, or having to face whitewater in a kayak, when we say we’re afraid out loud, it feels better.
A lot of people will say to us, “I thought you weren’t afraid of anything.” Because they thought this, they were too nervous to mention their fears. Well, it turns out we’re just as afraid, if not more than they are! There’s strength in numbers, and when you don’t feel that you are alone, you suddenly are a lot less afraid.
Hire a Professional
Dave and I do many things that seem actually insane. I flew a stunt plane in New Zealand, Dave jumped out of a plane in New Zealand. We both had a professional with us the entire time. When we take on an epic hike or decide that we want to face a raging river by kayak, we don’t go into it blindly.
We take a course or hire a guide. Having an experienced professional there to teach you, take care of you and make sure that you are safe, will alleviate many of the fears that you may have. You’ll find that by having a professional watch your back, you’ll discover a lot of courage within that you never thought you’d ever have.
So with National Face Your Fears Day here to motivate everyone to face their fears, make some plans to do something that scares you. Do something that scares you today! Maybe you’ve been afraid to approach someone you’ve had a crush on or maybe you’ve been afraid to apply for that new job.
If you have a fear of heights, maybe it is time to take an elevator up to the tallest building in your city and look out from the highest floor. It may be big, it may be small. But whatever it is, today is your day to get it done.
What’s your greatest fear? Are you planning on facing your fears today?
This post was created as part of my collaboration with Carnival. As always, all of the opinions, thoughts, and ideas in this post are our own.