One Sunday morning, I was at the Ballard Farmers market when I spotted a man who looked familiar. “My”, I thought to myself, “He looks like Patch Adams.”
For those of you who haven’t heard of Patch Adams MD, he was a doctor at a children’s hospital with an unorthodox, humorously silly approach to treatment, on which a movie was based featuring Robin Williams.
Shortly after noticing him, he came over and introduced himself to my friends and I.
“Hi, I’m Patch Adams.” he said, ”Have you heard of me?”
“Yes!” I exclaimed, “I knew it was you!” Happy that I was correct in my recognition.
Then, I asked, “May I take a photo with you?
Of course!” he smiled even bigger,
”But only if you stick your finger up your nose.”
“No, thank you.” I said, and turned to walk away.
“Wait a minute!”, he asked, “What do you think will happen whenever you look at a photo of us with our fingers in our noses?”
I thought a moment.
“Exactly,” he said.
Then it suddenly occurred to me all the times I’ve said No, and turned down opportunities because I was concerned about what other people thought, afraid of disapproval.
This was a moment of enlightenment.
I’m sure you’ve a similar story of hesitation and doubt, though probably much more stressful. In retrospect, because I really wasn’t attached to the outcome, as there were no real ramifications, it afforded me the moment to reflect on my own inner dynamics.
(I did take the picture with Patch Adams, MD with our fingers in our noses in-case you’re wondering 😉
Uncertainty, fear, and doubt are painful emotions that we all endure. These are the things keep us up, enduring another sleepless night worrying…
Fear deconstructs you.
Fear negatively impacts your view on life, your confidence levels, and even your potential. Fear of failure stifles creativity, destroys promising ideas, and stops us from realizing our dreams.
When you’re afraid and uncertain, your motivation diminishes.
Yes, my friends,
fear actually is the root of procrastination.
So, how can I manage and overcome my reluctance and fear?
- Acknowledge And Appreciate Your Emotions, Knowing They Support You.
- Recognize that you are feeling fear. This will help you get to the source.
- Determine the under laying cause. This requires self-reflection, which may be difficult while engulfed in the experience. It may require time alone afterwards in a safe place, to fully assess the situation.
- Check in with the conversation you’re having with yourself. What are your thoughts and words your saying to yourself? Are you deconstructing yourself? Are you repeating something negative someone once said to you? You may not be able to articulate into words the sensations you’re experiencing, so be patient.
- What is the message of the uncertainty and fear:
– What else could this mean?
– What can I learn from this?
– What is my belief causing me to feel this way?
Am I really: afraid of failing, being ridiculed, facing change, etc.?
It’s important that you recognize your fear and attempt to define what it is that makes you frightened.Asking these questions will help change your perception of the situations that intimidate you, your perception of yourself, and improve how you’re handling things.
- Probably the best method that works and will improve your confidence over time and over all is to purposely face your fears by doing activities that push you outside of your comfort zone. Now is the time to take that public speaking course. Or maybe next time, take the path over the footbridge with the long drop below. Often times you’ll find all those lions you thought were in your pathway were just kittens. Just try.
Remember, YOU are the source of all your emotions; you are the one who creates them. Be patient with yourself while following these steps as you awakened to your own inner dialogue, perceptions, and work on the changes to release your fears to live life more abundantly and joyfully!