In the previous post, we shared our near-death experience in Mexico, and we invited you to share your fears with us.
We were lucky to escape unscathed. But what made us luckier, was what we learnt from this experience.
Looking at death in the face taught us a thing or two about our fears – where we picked them up, how tightly we hold onto them, and the power we give them over our lives, our hopes, and our dreams.
When we shared the story at a live event, we handed out post-it pads and gave people 3 minutes to list down their fears – one on each post-it note.
These were the fears they wrote:
We were deeply humbled by how everyone readily opened up – in front of strangers no less – and really went for it.
But what was more powerful, was the realizations that they shared:
“As I was writing down my fears, I realized how some of them were no long applicable. I no longer have them. But I was holding onto them like they were part of my identity – as if if people asked me what my fears are, these would be my default answers. But in reality, I no longer feel that way!”
Our dear neighbor, Stephanie posted:
They weren’t the only two people who had these realizations. After they shared, it got others thinking about the fears they’d written down earlier –
Which ones were no longer applicable? Which ones were not theirs in the first place?
Towards the end of the event, one more person came up to us and shared with us – how by looking at his fears and everyone else’s, and thinking about what they’s shared – he’d let go of the fears that no longer were, the fears that no longer serve.
So here’s the challenge for you – Reduce Your Fears. Declutter them from your space to make room for more of you.
Take 5 minutes to do the following exercise – find a place where you’d not be disturbed for 5 minutes; you’d need a post-it pad, a pen, and three deep breaths.
- Start listing all the fears you have – one on each post-it note. List everything down, no self-censorship, no judging, no wondering if this fear is “fearsome” enough to cut it – seriously, if the fear even appears for a split second in your consciousness, write it down
- As you finish writing each fear down, intuitively place it into either of the following piles:
- N/A (NOT APPLICABLE) – this fear no long applies in my life. I’m so over it.
- NOT MINE – this fear wasn’t even mine to begin with. I took it on from someone else.
- MY CURRENT FEARS – this one is mine. I’ll look at it in a bit.
- Done? Good! Now release your fears in the first two piles – the N/A pile and the NOT MINE pile. Do whatever feels right for you. You could tear them up, put them through the shredder, or simply trash them. As you rid each pile – do this uber important thing – say to yourself:
- N/A – I forgive myself for holding onto these fears, even when they no longer apply
- NOT MINE – I forgive the people who’ve put these fears in my space, and I forgive myself for taking on these fears in the first place
Three deep breaths… Congratulations!
You’ve successfully reduced your fears! Didn’t that feel good?
Yes, it is that simple.
What do you do with the remaining pile? The one that says MY CURRENT FEARS? We have another tool coming for you next week (hint: it comes with part two of the video we showed in the previous post!)
Meanwhile, leave a reply in the comments section below and let us know how this exercise went.
Which fears did you discover were no longer applicable, which fears were not even yours to begin with? When you decluttered those fears, how did it feel?
We’d love to hear about your ah-has. More importantly, someone else sharing the same fears as you could read your post and benefit from your sharing, too!
You got this + We got you,
P.S. So many of us let our fears gnaw our lives away. If this exercise has been helpful to you, share this post with your friends and family members!