Cleopatra Jones kicking some major bootay!

Cleopatra Jones kicking some major bootay!

{This post is the second in the GOALdigging Academy series. To read the others, click here}

In the trailer for the big budget action film After Earth, Will Smith drops some jewels about fear that hit me straight in the heart.

He tells his son:

“If we are going to survive this, then you must realize that fear is not real. It is a product of thoughts you create. Do not misunderstand me; danger is very real. But fear is a choice.”

Read that again, then repeat after me:

Fear is a choice. {click to tweet this out}

When I first heard Smith’s voice booming through the theater about the fact that fear is not real…I literally got Goosebumps. My eyes welled up, and I damn near bolted out of that theater ready to take on the world (Then I remember how much I paid for my tickets & sat right back down).

Despite writing and speaking about overcoming fear several times, Will Smith gave me the pep talk of my life.
(now, get yours)

Since I was 5, and scared shitless by a little guy named E.T., I’ve been telling myself that my fears were irrational.

I distinctly remember staring up at the E.T. poster on my wall thinking it was alive, and his beady little alien eyes were watching me and waiting for the moment to pounce. I was shook.

After hours of trying to fall asleep while E.T. glared at me, I finally ripped the poster of my wall and went to sleep.

Fear had been conquered; at least for the night.

I’m sure you can relate.

While you may not have been afraid of a creepy little alien, I’ll wager there have been many moments in your life where you’ve been scared out of your mind.

The irrational story you told yourself about why you could never, ever switch careers? That was fear talking.

The lies you fed yourself about why you couldn’t travel to Africa on your own? Yup, that was fear, too.

The loud voice in your brain warning you to not even think about writing that book you’ve wanted to write for years? Fear strikes again.

I know fear when I see it because so many of my dreams have been dashed because I was too afraid to try to achieve them in the first place. And it sucks.

As Will Smith said, “Fear is a choice.” And despite knowing that giving in to fear will get us absolutely nowhere—unless unhappiness is a place you actually want to visit—we do it anyway.

Last week I decided to host my very first group writing coaching call. It’s something I’ve been thinking about for months, but only recently worked up the courage to actually do.

In spite of knowing how to break into freelancing and sharing my advice freely with others (who have always thanked me for it), I still hesitated to be proactive about marketing my services as a coach.

But why? I am qualified, I know from first hand experience how to break into this business, and I love helping others. So what was holding me back?

The most dangerous four letter word this side of hate: Fear.

But here’s how to beat it.

Almost everything we need to know about kicking fear’s ass is found in the above Will Smith quote, so let’s break it down.

To overcome fear you must remember:

Fear is just an emotion: The beauty of being human is that we have a myriad of emotions to choose from, and fear is just one of them. While emotions are simply “energy in motion” and may manifest themselves in very real physical ways, we can use that energy however we see fit by giving it another name or simply channeling the physical sensations into something else, like excitement. 

Fear is a choice: Believe it or not, we choose to be afraid. We choose to allow some things to scare us, while others don’t bother us at all. Once you realize that you have to power to define and decide what scares you, you can also choose not to let it phase you at all.

Your thoughts have power: If you’ve been rocking with me these last few months you have heard me hammer this one home. What we think, we believe. And what we believe is who we will become. If you want to be fearless, accomplish your dreams, and live the life you desire–think fearlessly. Conversely, if you want to continue to be trapped by fear…well, keep choosing to let it rule your life. You have the power to shape who you become, choose wisely.

Listen, all the pep talks in the world won’t prevent you from experiencing fear at some point in your life.

So to really kick fear’s ass you have to do one simple thing: act.

Feeling afraid and taking action anyway is the best way to beat fear into submission.

So the next time fear threatens to stop you in your tracks, do like I did when I was 5….tear it down and move on with your life.

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Drop me a comment and let me know how you overcome your fear. What do you tell yourself to help you move past it? Do you have any strategies? And how DOPE is that Will Smith quote?!

p.s. If you enjoy this post, do us all a favor and share it with a friend or on social media (use the buttons below).

p.p.s. If you’re a writer (or a wannabe writer) and want to get down with my free group coaching call on April 18th, register here. 

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