Remember in the last blog I talked about our fear of living in the unknown?
I have created this 2 part series that will outline how I break through fear barriers. The second part will describe practices you can adopt to change your mindset to live without fear.
Is your comfort zone your prison?
Our fear of the unknown relates to our Comfort Zone as in the diagram from the last blog.
The green area represents your comfort zone. It is that “safe place”, usually simply because we know it. However, ironically, it may not actually be physically, mentally or emotionally comfortable at all.
Sometimes it can end up being very uncomfortable, but we stay in there and often whinge about how bad it is – like the job or boss we hate or that relationship we are unhappy in.
We give in to our own FEAR barrier around our comfort zone. That is what turns our comfort zone into a prison that keeps us stuck. We create that prison ourselves and then allow it to control our decisions about what we can do.
What emotions lie within the FEAR barrier?
FEAR can take many forms. The following are most common for us to feel at some time:
- Failure, or, strangely, maybe even success
- Embarrassment or humiliation
- Not being good enough
You can probably think of some others that relate to you personally.
The trouble starts when we stay in that place of discomfort … blocked, like we are incapable of doing anything else. When we do that, we play VICTIM!
How to know if you are playing victim in your FEAR prison?
A telltale sign is when you find yourself blaming the situation you are in on other people or circumstances outside of yourself. When you do that, you give your power away … and you give it to the people you blame. You give away your power to create the life you want to live.
The act of transferring our power to the external circumstances is the FEAR barrier in action. It stops us from taking action which, consequently, prevents us from growing as a person. It is only when we move through the fear and into the Unknown that we evolve. That is where our personal development and growth takes place.
I had become imprisoned in my own comfort zone struggles. For those who haven’t read, or have forgotten, my story in my previous blogs, see The Decision to read more…
I realized that my life was not working for me, no matter how hard I tried … and I was not enjoying my life!
I had been living in high stress of not earning enough money to live and racking up $150,000 of credit card debt (over several years). I knew I had a capital asset in my home, but that did not help my constant stress of getting deeper and deeper into cash flow debt.
It was an extremely uncomfortable situation for me for several years and it seemed whatever I did, I could not get myself out of that stressful situation. I wasn’t sure what I needed to do anymore. I had tried many different things to change my situation. It’s not like I just sat back and did nothing … but none of it worked for me.
My BIGGEST fear at the time was having to sell my home. Having to face this reality haunted me for years. I felt so embarrassed!
8 years before I had already had to sell my previous beautiful home of my dreams, the home I had lovingly renovated and restored. My fear of selling this next home felt like I was slipping further down that rabbit hole of losing what I loved.
Every time I thought about selling the house, the fears would jump up in full chorus:
- Where I would live after that?
- Would I be able to afford to live where I wanted?
- Could I afford a home that I liked?
- Or maybe I would I get that elusive contract next month that would solve all my problems?
I worked so hard to avoid that outcome.
At the same time…I had a vision of living in France.
This vision had been the dream in the back of my mind that had been calling me for 30 years.
Unfortunately, the broken record FEAR squad kept playing this in my mind:
“If I can’t make a success of my life in my hometown, how could I do it in a totally new country where I don’t even know the language?”
I knew I did not want to sell my house and keep living in Melbourne though. BUT … my parents were still alive, elderly and in a nursing home, and then there were my two loves, Ludovic and my cat Maya. How could I leave them all?
I had realized that the financial stress and the opportunities that kept going wrong were the Universe’s messages telling me I was not on the right path for my soul’s purpose … but I did not know what was the right action to take. The message kept hitting me in the face … for like 10 years, with lack of business income. I defiantly fought against it. I stayed in my extremely uncomfortable “comfort zone” constrained by my fear barrier aka ‘my prison.’
… Until FINALLY (after a channeled reading) I made The Decision to follow my dream.
I decided to allow myself to do what I desired. After all, if it is what I kept wanting, then there was a reason that desire did not go away. It’s because I am meant to have it!
What was I waiting for before I could have what I wanted in my life?
What was I achieving by not getting out of my own way and going for it … apart from making myself unhappy?
The whole time, it had been ME blocking myself.
In that moment, I gave up on focusing on the negatives of why it wouldn’t work or what I would lose by moving to France. I didn’t even allow myself to dwell on the difficulty of getting a visa.
I focused on my dream and my drive to create the life I wanted to live. That dream, and creating a plan to make it real, empowered me to move forward with great gusto to sell my house and feel really good about doing it. I no longer dreaded the selling, as it had become the enabler I needed to pay off all my debt and have the money I needed to move to France. What a change around it was for me … in just 2 months.
This feeling of allowing what is possible, instead of focusing on my fear of loss, was an epic moment. This shift in mindset generated a completely new train of thoughts to flood my being.
Sure there were risks and my whole future was unknown, but the truth is my whole approach to life turned around with a radical change in perspective.
If you want to learn how to live more in the unknown, whether your fear is a metal barred prison or a ribbon curtain to push through, here are some mindset changes to break through FEAR into that Growth Zone!
1. Stop Imagining the Worst Possible Outcomes
Our FEAR is False Evidence Appearing Real.
Thinking about what might happen in the future is just plain imagination at it’s finest. You aren’t a psychic and, in fact, there are so many odds in the unknown that you can never guarantee success or failure. Yet, what do we do? Imagine what is the worst that could happen.
So, if it is all just imagination, and you can easily imagine the negative outcomes, why can’t you imagine positive ones instead?
Remember the Law of Attraction … What you focus on is what you create in your life.
It is important to develop self-awareness around your own tendency to think negatively. If we keep imagining ONLY bad outcomes, we spiral into worry, which brings on anxiety. Don’t allow yourself to live there.
Your mind cannot think clearly, nor can it evolve, when it’s in a state of worry. It also unbalances your spirit and leaves you feeling totally ungrounded and a bit helpless.
It is very important to:
- train yourself to imagine the results you desire
- ignore than the ones you don’t want
- make a conscious choice to not worry
I adopted this way of looking at my stressors years ago. I ask myself these questions:
- Am I doing everything I can to fix the situation?
- If NO, what else can I do? And then I take that action. Being proactive takes away the worry.
- If YES, what is the point of worrying because there is nothing else I can do. So I choose not to worry about it, with the motto
Que Sera Sera, whatever will be, will be.
Did you start singing it? Honestly? hehe
Try this for 60 days – because it takes 60 days of practice to break an old habit and create a new one. At first, it will probably feel awkward, but that’s only because your comfort zone has actually become that place of negativity.
2. Be Mindful and Aware of your Negative Thoughts
Develop your ability to catch and replace negative thoughts in real-time until it is effortless!
Being mindful and aware of your thoughts takes real effort at first. It does not come naturally if you are not used to doing it. Like learning any new skill – it takes practice and practice until it becomes your normal way of doing things.
Once you are aware of your thoughts and when they are negative, then it takes discipline to change them to something more positive. Every time you find yourself thinking negative thoughts or worrying about the worst possible outcomes, deliberately choose to think positive thoughts instead … immediately. Change your focus to think of the positive outcome you desire and something good that you want to happen.
It is important to get yourself into a positive mindset. Each time you observe yourself focusing on your fears and negative outcomes … change your mind!
I’m not saying it will be easy. Of course, friends and family will have their opinions too, that they will try to force on you. You can, and I advise you do, choose to ignore their perspective and stick to the one that makes you feel good.
How do you know when you are successfully thinking positively?
You will feel a change in your state of being. You will find your are a much happier person and more fun to be around and people will respond to you more positively too. The best part about this mindset change is that you will be delighted in the results of how your world conforms to your positivity.
Are you an action taker who wants to move closer to Living your Vision and make positive changes in your life?
Try these exercises and let me know how you go in the comments or via personal message. I really want to hear from you and will give you feedback and support.
Be the mindset action taker in your life!
Of course, these sort of old habits are not as easy to change as wiggling your nose like in Bewitched. Most people benefit from having the ongoing coaching to help them change their mindset.
More practices for Living in the Unknown without Fear in the next blog.