What Would You Do If You Weren't Afraid? 7 Ways To Grow Past Fear & Find Out

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Woman riding a bike while man behind her cheers

Some time in the past week, I saw this question, "What would you do if you were not afraid?" And it got me thinking.

If I weren’t afraid, I would do a million things, like skydiving, raising sheep on a farm, raising chickens in my backyard, buying a tiny house on wheels, and spending time in different places around the United States. 

But, I'm afraid, plus I'm over the age of wonderment and exploration… Or am I?

Not so quick, Honey, the wild part of my brain says. You can still have a ball.

I can?  I ask myself. I have not been anywhere for more than an hour from my house in six months, and that was to go to the doctor. How? I ask the daring part of my brain as I sneak into the kitchen for more black olives and a few peanuts.

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What would you do if you weren't afraid?

Fear is often the result of overthinking.

I have a tendency to overthink. I know many of you can relate. 

The conversation I had with myself after considering that big question above went a little like this: 

What about all your talents, strengths, and potential you’ve been writing about for years? Did you forget about all your positive psychology teaching?

Are you going to get in the dumps because you cannot jump out of a plane? You never really wanted to do that, anyway.

And you have tons of allergies, so you would never have made it on a sheep farm. You never exercised enough to have good arm muscles. Think you could lift a sheep to be sheared? Think again.

Chickens? Really? All those feathers... And what about collecting the eggs in bad weather or having chicks that need to be under a heat light? That doesn't seem right for you.

Maybe you could go around in a tiny house, but your style is more of a nice hotel room with a delicious breakfast. You get carsick even with those crazy bands on your wrist and all the ginger capsules you could swallow.

Maybe you need to just give yourself a break...

But, in the end, I didn't let the dark side of my brain win. Yes, I incorporated logic — I don't need to become a sheep farmer tomorrow, I don't need to be a professional wingsuit diver — but I didn't give up on all my dreams.

So, how do you get out of your fear? Well, don't let the dark side of your brain win!

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Here are seven ways to grow past your fears.

1. Take a break.

This is a hard time for all of us. So, think of things you can do easily that don’t take a toll on your mood or your health.

Nothing wrong with watching a great series on your T.V. or the computer.

2. Eat healthily.

Comfort foods may lead to weight gain. I know this can sound a bit cruel, but I really love you.

Try to eat more healthily by adding more vegetables, fruit, and some nuts in your diet. (But not the whole jar of peanuts!)

3. Stay in touch with everyone you care about.

Invite the people you love to meet you in a park, or on your porch fro a chat.

Write and call your grandchildren. Share with them everything fun or fascinating from your past.

4. Be kind to all.

Everyone is stressed and many are really upset. This is where you can really show how smart you are.

Think of a good thing to say to anyone you talk to!

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5. Have fun!

Give yourself permission to have fun in any realistic way where you will not break a leg or hurt someone else.

6. Make a list.

Make a list of your talents, strengths, and potential that really fit this time in your life.

7. Start doing a lot of great things.

You don't need to be afraid, even for just a minute or two.

Feeling enriched and having that wonderful feeling that comes with "Enchanted Self" moments starts with yourself.

Make a list of your talents, strengths, untapped potential, and even your coping skills that you have right now. Also, make a list of what you have enjoyed doing in the last year or so.

Now the puzzle solution is up to you. You're free to build off the list that the daring part of your brain suggested.

Actually, it’s a good list based on the thinking of many educators and psychologists. Or, just go for your own plan.

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Dr. Barbara Becker Holstein is a positive psychologist, a best-selling author, and an award-winning Selfie Filmmaker focusing on coming-of-age issues for girls and women. She is also a noted podcaster. Many of her shows and interviews can be found on YouTube and Vimeo.

This article was originally published at Reprinted with permission from the author.