Fear is simply the most powerful survival instinct a human can experience. Therefore it is the most invasive when it is misplaced.
We must first understand that fear is a necessary component for survival. We learn to fear that which can hurt us for good reason at a genetic level, and it is passed on through learning generationally and storytelling before that.
When we realize we must fear certain things but not others and begin to separate real fears that can actually hurt us physically and fears that only exist in our own minds then we have begun the path to balance.
Analyze all of your negative emotions and really dig deep to see where fear is hiding inside of them.
Here are 10 ways to minimize your fears:
1) Recognize That Fear is the Root of All Negative Emotions
Define Anger. Define Sadness. Define Jealousy. Pick any negative emotion in your life and it can be traced back to fear.
Just like the peeling back of an onion to reveal more layers, fear is usually the center of all negativity.
2) Get the Facts
Find out as much possible information about your situation as possible. Ask questions. Do internet research. Read books if time allows.
Simply gathering facts frames the situation in a more approachable way for our minds.
List all the facts that you find out and make them accessible. Put pen to paper. This will make the possibility of the scenario more quantifiable and easier to understand
3) Analyze the Facts
Break down all of the information and think through how you can use it to your advantage and help to more clearly define your fear.
This will help you to take away the unknown in the situation as much as possible.
Simply not knowing things in and of itself causes fear and anxiety.
4) Identify the WORST Case Scenario
Honestly think about the worst case scenario in any situation or possible situation that you are fearful of.
If your fear is rational then pinpoint the outcome if the worst happened. Will you die? Will you be injured will a loved one be hurt or injured? Are you afraid that the plane may go down? Will you be bitten by the spider?
Now list these scenarios where this may happen. Then determine the PROBABILITY that they may occur.
Most times the probability of the feared outcome is miniscule.
5) Accept the Outcome
If the very slim probable outcome of your fear occurs, then accept it as a fact and then pause to analyze what you would then do if it happened.
Once the outcome is accepted, then imagine what someone else might do if they had to face that situation.
In your mind visualize someone who you deem intelligent and competent. Ask yourself what they would do in that situation?
6) Formulate A Plan to Improve the Worst Case
Chances are that you will likely be able to determine some realistic ways to minimize the worst scenario.
Can you change your behaviors to help? Can you enlist another person to help you overcome this scenario?
Once you have begun to formulate a plan, keep in mind that by doing so you are reducing the probability of the out come even more.
Remember your math lessons. If the likelihood of the out come is 10% and you work to minimize the outcome by only an additional 10% more you have actually decreased the likelihood by 100 fold!
7) Make a Decision
Once you have learned and analyzed the facts as you know them, then make a decision. This decision will be the basis for your actions moving forward and knowing what you will do it a huge release of fear.
It gives you a purpose in dealing with your problem. Purpose helps to drive away fears of many sort
8) Take Action
Now is the time to implement your plan. Your plan should have now given your a reasonable idea of the least probably negative outcome.
Your plan is now ready to be executed. So do the first step in your plan.
Simply taking an action will reduce your stress and anxiety as you now know what you need to do to minimize the worst scenario.
9) Track your Actions
Make a mental list or write down your actions and begin to check off each step in your actions plan.
10) Assess your risk as you implement your plan
Again remember your statistics. With each step you take in implementing your plan, you multiply minimization of your risks and ultimately you will reduce the real fears as you know have a solid plan to overcome them, and real steps to take to help your situation.