Risky Women by Megan Ragsdale – purchase now on Amazon

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Feeling Overwhelmed?  How to not let fear get the best of you

People who know how to work with fear versus being consumed or paralyzed by it are typically good at the following four key things, so the next time you feel overwhelmed with fear, these are the steps you should implement:

  1. Self-Awareness: The fear will never go away, so don’t waste your time trying to mask or ignore it. Instead, learn how to identify the fear and the feelings that come with it on a cognitive, emotional, and physical level. 
  2. Separation: Understand the difference between I am afraid and I am experiencing feelings of fear. You are not the sum of your thoughts and feelings. If you can put distance between you and whatever is about to put you into an emotional tailspin, this “sacred pause” can give you the psychological space you need to move on to the next step.
  3. Self-Management: Once you can properly identify your emotions, it becomes easier to work more productively on controlling your responses to them. First, be still. Let the emotions come, and then let them pass through you. Don’t try to prevent them, and don’t knee-jerk respond to them. Just be with them. When you’re ready, move forward and act; don’t let fear paralyze you into getting stuck where you are. 
  4. Recovery: Consider this a contingency step. You’re not always going to make the right decision, but you can’t allow that to create more fear that prevents you from taking further action and making future decisions. Learn how to build resilience by practicing faster recovery from errors and missteps, and you will stay one step ahead of your fears. You do this through positive self-talk and making sure you practice good mental and physical self-care.

You aren’t going to suddenly wake up one morning and find that you’ve transformed into a bold and fearless version of your former self. It’s a daily practice that, over time, will help you build up your risk-taking muscle and achieve your potential. Successfully navigating through your fear is one of the best ways to build your self-confidence. Even if a situation ends poorly, you can be more confident knowing that you got yourself through it. We are too quick sometimes to dismiss our record of fighting fear. Let’s put that skill to the test.

This is an excerpt from my new book Risky Women: How to Reach the Top Levels of Leadership or Know When It’s Time to Get The Hell Out. Available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Porchlight. For more content like this follow me on LinkedIn and sign up for my newsletter: https://www.linkedin.com/in/meganfarrell/

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