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How to Use Your Fear to Your Advantage

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Fear is a powerful feeling.  There was probably fear in deciding to open your own business, looking for a new job, or quitting your current one.  Having security can be comforting and inviting, but if you are not careful, it can be detrimentally limiting.  Not taking risks or allowing yourself to be paralyzed by fear will ensure your stagnancy, but if we take that feeling and use it as a motivator, it can be what leads you to success.  Performance coach, Stephen Claybourn, teaches his clients how to use fear as a motivator.


Fear as a Paralyzer

It is easy to let fear get in the way of taking steps forward.  It is common for people to allow fear to cause them to freeze up and not know what their next steps should be.  The sensation of fear is common, even if you’ve overcome the feeling once, it’s easy to let it make you second guess yourself and your plan, which will again lead you a path with little growth.  Instead of allowing fear to paralyze you, you need to reshape your mindset to allow it to motivate you. Everyone deals with some kind of fear, it is what we chose to do after that separates us. If we let fear win then we will always be limited in our success.


Fear as a Motivator

Fear can be used as a huge motivator. Leaders use fear to drive their decisions to move forward. When you use fear in this way it can propel you years ahead of others.  When fear is used in a good way the sky is the limit on our ability to achieve.  The whole “what if” question is reoccurring and usually we come up with answers that predict a negative outcome.  Instead, challenge yourself to take that “what if” question and answer with all the positive consequences that could result from taking those scary steps forward.  Everything is about your mindset and how you look at a problem.  You can allow it to limit you, or you can allow it to inspire you.

Understand Your Fear

Understanding what is causing your fear is essential in knowing the steps to take to overcome it.  One way to take that fear and help it work for you is to realize the result that you are afraid of and have a plan if it is to happen.  This way, your fear will dissipate as the result you fear will be manageable and solved before it can even present itself.

Find Creative Solutions

If you are afraid to make a choice and take a step forward, or you find yourself in a position where you feel that you’re destined to fail due to some sort of obstacle in your way, reshape your thinking.  Instead of looking at a problem as a full roadblock, look at it as an opportunity to find a creative solution.  Your success is a direct result of your frame of mind, and you should shape it into looking at everything as a new opportunity.

Redefine Fear

Teaching yourself to look at things under a different light takes time but can have a significant impact on your approach to life.  Instead of letting that sensation of fear feel like fear, redefine it.  You can take that feeling you get and look at it as excitement.   Turn that fear into an exciting new challenge that you cannot wait to tackle.  If you reshape your thoughts to reflect positivity, you will be free, and you will have the courage and confidence to take your needed steps forward.

You choose what fear does to you.  It is hard at first to use fear as a good thing, but if you start to recognize and pay attention to the way you react to fear, you can change the way you use it. This takes knowing yourself and understanding how to turn bad into good. There is always an opportunity in crisis.


I am a physician and career entrepreneur. After studying medicine, I founded a social media marketing agency and a fitness equipment company as well as direct a non profit. My goal is to inspire others to achieve their dreams and create the freedom in their life that they know is within reach. I host a podcast Mentors Collective to interview some of my favorite business minds.


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