#GreatRead: Feel The Fear and Do It Anyway-Susan Jeffers

I’d be lying if I said I was fearless. I’m not. I think that “fearless” people are either lying to themselves or are reckless, honestly. We all come across fears in our lives. Some of us let it hold us back, while others drum up enough courage to power through it.

I just finished reading late author and psychologist Susan Jeffers’ book, Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway. Pretty good concept, huh? It’s been over thirty years since the book’s release, and Susan’s message still rings true.

The big idea of the book is looking at how you think of and handle fear itself. There are all kinds of fears, right? Fear of rejection. Fear of failure. Fear of starting over. But the truth is, fear is always going to be a part of our lives if we’re consistently growing. If you’re not battling some kind of fear, you’ve pretty much gotten stagnant. Fear will most certainly pop up whenever we’re trying our hands at something new or taking a risk. But what ever happens, and whatever fear pops up, YOU CAN HANDLE IT. That’s what Susan talks about in her book. Check out one of her past interviews below!

In her book, Susan breaks down the following levels of fear (surface stories, generalized fears, and underlying fears). She also gives readers some real truths about fear as well (courtesy of Reading Graphics):

Here are some things I got from this breakdown and Susan’s book. One, other people have gone through and overcome the exact same fears I have. I’m not alone in it. That fact alone made me feel a little better. When things are happening directly to you, you often feel like nobody else in the world understands. Reaching out to a select few about my fears and hearing their experiences and encouragement helps me to power on.

Two, there’s NO WAY of avoiding my fears if I want to grow. Sure, I’d be comfortable staying in the same spot, but I don’t get better at what I want to accomplish. I don’t become who I’m meant to be. The same goes for each of you!

Three, somehow, someway, if I step up to the plate, I will find a way to get through it to the best of my ability. Win or fail, it’ll be over with just as soon as I start. Case in point, at a past interview for a job I really wanted, I was scared to death. I thought I had bombed the initial phone screen, so I was shocked that I got called for an in-person interview. My anxiety was high because I wanted to do well and I really, REALLY wanted this job. I was a nervous wreck, and I was trying my best to think positive. But you know what else I surprisingly envisioned? The aerobics class I would have at the end of the day. For some reason, that made me feel a little better. I’d give my best at this interview and, regardless of what happened, I was going to go kill it at my fitness class later. Gave me something to look forward to. I did much better at the live interview and got the job!

But I had to push past that fear first. I used to have a terrible fear of interviews. I conduct them, and I hate it being the other way around. I’ve even skipped out on a few because of the fear. For this one, I buckled down and forced myself to push through. I had to. I needed a change. And change and growth doesn’t happen without facing some fears.

What are you fearing today? Is it a new job opportunity? An upcoming move? Going away to college? Whatever it is, YOU CAN AND WILL BE ABLE TO HANDLE IT. There’s no growth without some fears, and there’s certainly no growth if you decide to run from them.

You can pick up Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway on Amazon and other digital and retail outlets.

B Courageous

(This post is a part of my “B” series which I’ll deliver once a month! Continue to B Kind. B Silly. B Inspired. B Imperfect.)

I put on a really good front, but only almost two and a half months in, this year has already been a scary one. I’ve committed to making 2018 great and truly working to execute the vision I have for myself this year. And that has required taking some risks with new writing opportunities, learning new skills, and stretching myself beyond what I thought I could…and I’m high key terrified.

I hear inspirational speakers and others tell people that they have to be fearless and go after what they want, but I honestly don’t feel that most of us will ever be 100% “fearless.” It’s completely natural to be afraid of the unknown. It’s natural to be afraid of loss or rejection. It’s natural to want to stay inside of your comfort zone and not go after new things. We want to be safe and not face rejection or failure.

It’s challenging to go after new jobs or projects, So instead of telling y’all to be fearless and just push through, I’m encouraging you all to “b” COURAGEOUS. Courage isn’t necessarily the absence of fear. It’s being completely terrified…and attempting to push through and move forward anyway! 

I’ve had to face my fears of pitching and meeting with people face to face to discuss my ideas. I’ve had to network more and more, which automatically makes me anxious. I’m continually working on expanding my writing portfolio, and it’s downright nervewracking trying new things and working with new people. And there’s no guarantee that everything is going to work out. But no risk, no reward.

[ctt template=”9″ link=”c6Xk6″ via=”no” ]Courage isn’t necessarily the absence of fear. It’s being completely terrified…and attempting to push through and move forward anyway! [/ctt]

But how do you do that? How do you stand tall and push through your fears? It’s one thing to even tell people to be courageous, but how can you really do that? Here’s what helps me.

1) Prayer/Meditation/Reflection

As I continue to grow in my faith in God, taking time to pray and self-reflect on my life has been really helpful. Not only am I less anxious, but I become more clear on what I need to do and how I need to go about it. It gives me the strength I need to push past my fears of the unknown.

2) Remember Your Why

In a powerful video, motivational speaker Eric Thomas asked members the Miami Dolphins, “What’s your why?” What was the reason outside of themselves and their selfish desires that they were putting in so much work? That “why” pushes you outside of your desires and even your fears, because you have something greater than you to focus on. 

So what’s your why? It could be your kids or other people in your family. It could be that you want to help other people through your gift. When you consider your why, you can break through your fears so that you’re able to serve them.

3) Think Of What You’ll Miss Out On If You Don’t

FOMO is real for me. My fear of missing out on what I COULD do or achieve is greater than my fear of what I’m facing right at this moment. My fear of getting stuck in a place that’s not where I’m meant to be is greater than my fear of pressing forward.

What will you miss out on if you don’t push past your fear?

4) Commit To Taking One Step At A Time

I truly think that so many people feel like they have to have every little thing figured out about their brand, blog, business, or whatever other idea or goal. That itself can make people nervous and anxious and ready to shut down completely. Identify small but clear tasks that you can commit to working on each day towards your goals. Don’t get so caught up in the big picture of how far you have to go. Just take things one step at a time!

5) Come to Grips With Inevitable Failure

Another thing that keeps people paralyzed with fear is the fact that they have a limited view of failure. People struggle to come to terms that failure is inevitable, and believe that, once you’ve failed, that’s it. Failure will happen and it’s perfectly okay!

I used to fear failure so much, I wouldn’t go after new opportunities or build my ideas. But failure is a part of life. There’s no escaping it. And, if I’m honest, it’s my failures that have taught me perseverance and forced me to get better! Now, I’d rather fail over and over again, than to never try.

What fear are you committed to push through today? Let me know in the comments!




Words of Wisdom: “Face Your Fears”-Will Smith

I needed this video this morning, and I hope it inspires all of you too!

Will Smith gives this great example of facing your fears head on to get to the great things on the other side. He went skydiving in Dubai with friends a while back, and was really excited before it started to hit him like, “Yo, I’m really hopping out of a plane tomorrow….” The fear was real then! But he got there, and his skydiving instructor pushed him out a little earlier than expected so he wouldn’t chicken out. It turned out to be one of the most amazing experiences of his life! “The best things in life are on the other side of terror,” Will concluded.

That’s something I needed to hear right now in my life. I’m in a good place, but I’m working to get to new levels, and it’s really scary. It’s scary to move out of your comfort zone, to go after new opportunities, to pitch new ideas to your company, to start your own business, etc. But, once you push past that fear, and see what great things awaited you on the other side, it’s a feeling like none other. So I’m committed to continue to face my fears to get to my destiny and what God has for me. How about you? 

Watch Will speak about his experience below!

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