“I have learned over the years that when one’s mind is made up, this diminishes fear.”
~Rosa Parks

I hear from so many clients about the things they want to do or know they really need to do, but somehow, they can’t seem to move forward on their plans. When we dig deep into what might be getting in their way, we almost always hit at least a bit of fear.

Fear of failure. Fear of success. Fear of upsetting others or “rocking the boat.” Fear of behaving differently than others – or they themselves – expect them to act.

Fear gets in the way.

We’ve written here many times about fear. That it can be False Evidence Appearing Real. That it can also be a safety mechanism that kicks in to warn us of danger. That it can be triggered by our negativity bias – our brains are Teflon for the good and Velcro for the bad, and we’re more likely to notice and remember anything negative. That it can help us take stock of our situation, get real about what’s going on, and prepare for our future.

Fear in and of itself is a neutral emotion, just like anger and suspicion and sadness. Fear is simply feelings that arise based on our interpretation of the world around us and our thoughts. It’s what we do with those thoughts that matters. We have a choice to examine our thoughts and our actions. We have a chance to Thoughtfully choose our next steps and attitudes.

When we let these emotions stop us from moving forward toward what we want and need, we’re letting them rule our lives and limit us.

I think of Rosa Parks, somehow having the courage to not give up her seat on the bus. I think about what it must have taken for her to take that step. Was it as simple as making her mind up?

I bring this to my clients (and myself when I need it) to remind them that they can make up their minds to do what they want to do and be who they want to be. And that will diminish their fear.

How have you learned to move through your fear?
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If you enjoyed this post, you can read more like it in our book, The Power of Thoughtful Leadership: 101 Minutes To Being the Leader You Want To Be, available on Amazon.

For support in making up your mind, contact Robyn at rmcleod@chatsworthconsulting.com.

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