I guess we can all agree when I say that “ Holding on to hope can be really hard especially when things just don’t go our way no matter how hard or no matter how long we try!”
Having hope is one of the most beautiful things ever! We must have all experienced this at some point in life : Things get harder and harder and despite that we somehow had hope that we would win and we would have ended up winning!
It’s like having MSD in your team during a cricket match chase. Make sense?
But living in fear is not a great feeling right? And yet a lot of us choose fear over hope often!
Types of fear :
Humans experience a wide variety of fear in everyday life.
- Fear of failure
- Fear of rejection
- Fear of people’s opinion : being judged
- Fear of not having enough
- Fear of losing our identity
- Fear of losing control
- Fear of not having enough time
- Fear of who you really are : Imposer syndrome
- Fear of uncertainty
This list could go on if we brainstorm and start writing the ranges of fears that we experience in everyday life. Here’s a list of fears that people could experience in their lives
Fear Vs Hope : Which one to choose?
I have always thought of hope to be our spiritual compass whose presence itself will guide us through the darkness.
Imagine walking through a mountain train at night surrounded by dense forest, scary animal noises and even dense mist that obstructs your visibility.
This is life. The nights do end and the trail will take us to heavenly places that are just out of a story book! But the trail does get hard at times and that’s when we need hope to keep going despite all the odds.
But if we give in to fear, we abandon our trail and choose another one, the one that’s less scary . The one that feels safer. But it’s not our trail. It doesn’t take us to where we want to go!
This is what fear essentially does to our lives. It makes us choose safer paths. The paths that don’t take us to the life we desire. And at the end of it all, if we keep listening to the fears, we will end up in the top of a mountain called regret after which the trail ends.
We just have to jump off it with a heavy heart and this thought “ Perhaps I should have stayed in my own trail”
Regret is the worst thing one has to feel at the end of their lives. Because we do not get to relive our lives again.
We will not have the energy or time to walk back through the trails and start from where it all began.
So let it rain down on us. Let the animals taunt us. Let the forest wear us down. Let the snakes and insects scare the life out of us. But no matter what scares us, we need to hold on to hope and stick to our trail, so at the end of this long and beautiful journey called life, we will reach the top of the mountain that we desired where regrets don’t have meaning!
What’s the point in playing it safe anyways? So we get to feel better momentarily? We stay in our comfort zones?
What about the big picture? Feeling good today at the expense of sacrificing our dreams, passion and spirit is definitely not worth it.
Remember the decision you make today, the paths you change, would affect the way you live each and every single moment of your life. Read it again, it affects every moment!
Every time you choose fear, remember regret. The more you choose fear, the closer you get to the mountain of regret.
Know what you want and walk your trail, irrespective of how hard it is. Nothing can hurt you except yourself!
DEALING WITH FEAR:
Tony Robbins once said that “ The fear of pain and the desire for pleasure are the two main emotions that drive people”
Makes sense right?
If you think about it,
“ It’s easier to be consumed by fear than be inspired by hope or be driven by desire!”
Dealing with fear is not as simple as reminding us that we would end up regretting it all for some people.
Fears are often deep rooted and require some introspection and effort to get over.
Don’t react immediately. Stay calm:
Think about the last time you were really afraid of something. Did you stay calm and process what’s happening or did you react immediately?
It’s important to stay calm and process the situation in hand before deciding the best move to make. The first thing we say or do might be very significant in some scenarios.
Use breathwork to further control your emotions. Take deep breaths and think about the big picture.
Are you really in trouble or are you just imagining the worst case scenarios that could happen to you?
Most times these stories that we tell ourselves can really impact how we feel. Which takes us to the next point.
Practices that helps you with this step:
This section is for people who generally find it hard to conquer their emotions when they burst out.
Some or most of these might be obvious but most of us wouldn’t have tried it because again, we didn’t have enough faith in the process.
Again here, take a leap of faith in the process and see the magic happen:
- Meditation :
If you are not a believer of this practice, you are missing out on a world of opportunities.
Meditation really gives us the calmness and patience that one needs in an overwhelming situation to handle it better!
All you have to do is to try this for 15 mins a day everyday. Is that too much to ask?
- Use breathwork:
It has been proven that the way we breathe would change based on the type of emotion we experience.
So whenever you feel frustrated, in panic or afraid, remember to take a deep breath which helps in makes us calm!
Analyze the situation:
One thing we need to realize is fear is actually not always the enemy. Fear is a mechanism to keep us from danger.
So is there actually any danger? Analyze the situation in clear mind. If you think with emotions, we will let fear win and flee the place.
Stay calm and analyze the situation.
For instance, I was actually hiking once and we went into a thick forest area which was off trail and heard hyena laughter sound. Fear crept into me and my brother. We were alone with no weapons or even any cell phone tower to call for help.
While my brother panicked and wanted to flee the place, I somehow tried to stay calm and analyze if there’s actually danger there.
So we stood there for 10 mins without making any noise and realized it was probably some other sound that panicked us and went ahead through the forest and had one of the unforgettable experience of our lives.
Its definitely not smart to try and dismiss fear without thinking first
Flip the script : The power of focus:
Fear is often caused by the stories that we tell ourselves right?
Maybe we fear we will lose our jobs? Or maybe the fear is about not being able to earn money because we undervalue ourselves. Maybe it’s about not progressing in our dreams or about getting publicly humiliated for sharing our ideas or giving a speech.
Whatever it is, if we keep our focus on all the ways we could potentially fail, we won’t stand much of a chance in conquering this fear or succeeding on the thing we put our mind to.
Focus on the end goal. Focus on the process and tell yourself good stories rather than horror ones.
Ask yourself ” Will you regret it if you let fear win and abandon your path? “
If the answer is yes, keep going.
This takes us to the next step :
Take a leap of faith: Hope:
At the end of it all, we need to take action and not be paralyzed by fear. Once we calm ourselves, analyze the situation and have flipped the script, it is the right time to take action!
Take your spiritual and mental compass out now. Take a leap of faith. Hold on to that hope and keep going. Even if you fail, it’s a step forward in YOUR PATH.
That’s progress. And sooner or later you will be unstoppable!
Be okay with things that aren’t in our control:
No matter who we are, we would like some sort of certainty and control over our lives. But there are things that aren’t in our control and that frightens a lot of us.
This is something we need to get used to and learn to handle.
Remember there will always be things that are not in our control in every moment of our lives. We could get into a road accident tomorrow or catch an infectious disease. If we choose to live in fear of these things, our lives won’t be much fun tho. Right?
In the battle of hope vs fear, we need to make sure we don’t let fear win too much because that will literally completely derail our lives and we would end up in a path that’s not ours.
Fear based decisions can lead to regretful life and sometimes we need to take a leap of faith and keep going irrespective of how hard things become.
Makes sense right?
Hope this article helped!