If you're struggling with anxiety, panic disorder, and agoraphobia, I'm sure you're struggling with a lot of fear! You might even develop a fear of fear, which can feel difficult to navigate. For years, I was afraid of feeling the fear! The worst part is you're likely experiencing lots of fear just doing everyday things. And it sucks, I know! But the good news is that with time, courage, and small steps, you can completely change your relationship with fear.
So here's the thing... You can't heal your relationship with anxiety until you fix your relationship with fear. You might be thinking, "How can I possibly build a positive relationship with fear?!". And I get it! If you told me this when I was struggling with panic and agoraphobia, I would've said the same thing! But I'm here to tell you that you can absolutely create a healthy relationship with fear. Heck, I am living proof of it!
In episode 62 of the podcast, I'm going to share lots of helpful tips and information that will help you overcome the fear of fear. We'll talk about how you can start navigating the fear in a healthy way, and even start experiencing a whole lot less of it in the process! So let's talk about overcoming the fear of fear, and how we can build a healthy relationship with anxiety!
Overcoming The Fear Of Fear
1. Resisting and Avoiding Fear Will Only Strengthen It
I want you to know that you're not crazy for wanting to avoid fear. It's not the greatest feeling! But when you resist the feelings of fear, you're teaching your brain that it needs to fear the fear. With small steps and allowing yourself to feel the discomfort, you're actually allowing yourself to heal! Let's talk more about small steps...
2. Take Fear With You When You're Facing The Hard Stuff
This can be hard at first...but taking the uncomfortable thoughts and feelings with you, rather than trying to leave them behind, leads to so much healing in the long run. And when we allow ourselves to feel uncomfortable feelings and come out the other side, we teach our brains that we were never in any real danger. And over time, you'll find that the fear of fear isn't nearly as strong as it once was!
3. Courage Fights Fear
If you find yourself waiting for courage and motivation to pop up before doing the hard thing, you'll probably be waiting forever! In reality, courage and motivation tend to come after you feel the fear, and you see just how capable you are. And this courage helps fight the fear, too!
4. How To Overcome The Moments When You're Feeling Even More Fear
Sometimes when you're allowing yourself to feel the fear, you'll feel even more anxiety (which is normal!). But you might be telling yourself that this is a level of fear that you can't handle, or that you're not comfortable with. Psst, you've always handled the hard moments, even when you thought you couldn't. So the best thing you can do in these moments is to slow down and become aware of how you're feeling, and let yourself feel it. Because when you slow down, let yourself feel, and remove the expectations, you'll gain some clarity and you'll be able to take steps that align with what you want to do, rather than what anxiety is telling you not to do!
5. Check In With Yourself and Remember Your Why
Take a moment to remind yourself what you're working so hard for. Maybe it's to travel, or maybe it's to be able to do anything and everything with your kids, or maybe it's to be able to land that dream job of yours or fulfill your passions, or to just do the things you enjoy with lots of peace! When you take the time to remember what you're working toward, you'll remember why you want to keep working with the fear and pushing through it.
Creating a healthy relationship with fear might feel so out of reach right now. But I want you to know that this doesn't mean healing isn't possible! When I was struggling with panic disorder and agoraphobia, I used to wonder how people could ski down a mountain with ease. And now, I don't think twice about doing the same thing. If you told me while I was struggling that one day I'd ski down mountains for fun, I wouldn't have believed you! Trust that recovery is possible for you because I know how capable you are!
Make sure to tune in and listen to the full episode for all the goodness!