Do You Know the Source of Your Fear?

It might be an insecurity

Katrina Paulson
Dec 1, 2020 · 5 min read

But the thing is, just because our Fear tell us the worst-case scenario — doesn’t mean we have to listen.

Why Do We Feel Fear?

The instinct to be afraid is encoded deep within the DNA of pretty much every living thing, including plants.

Fear in Everyday Life

By this point, I think it’s safe to say we’re all experts in being scared. Even still, physical danger isn’t the only thing Fear is tasked with protecting, it also protects your ego.

Fear of the Unknown

Generally speaking, we aren’t fans of the unknown. We’d much rather know what’s coming and prepare accordingly. When we don’t know or if there’s missing information, our brains get to work filling in the gaps. You might recognize them as the “what-ifs”.

Loss of Control

We love feeling in control, period. It doesn’t matter what we’re controlling, we seek it everywhere. The reason is simple, we want control because if we don’t have it, it means someone else does. And if someone else has control, then it leaves us vulnerable.

Change

I’m pretty sure our fear of change dominated the majority of 2020. We’ve practically confronted change every moment of every day. The good news is, humans are adaptable — it’s part of how we’ve lasted this long without going extinct. The bad news is, we prefer to adapt at the pace of a sloth when possible. Rapid change makes us cranky unless of course, we’re the ones initiating it.

How to Find the Why behind Your Fears

You don’t have to wonder if you’re in danger when an ax flies toward your face. It’s obvious. But when your fears aren’t physical, understanding the source of them is a little harder. The tips below will help you identify the source of your fear so you can choose how to handle it.

Challenge Your Fear

Fear isn’t a psychic, it’s a dramatic doomsayer. Nor is it the most logically minded emotion. Its only job is to outline all the problems and pessimistic possibilities of life. Your job is to evaluate the information and decide the best course of action — and you do this by challenging your Fear.

Get the Facts

When we’re missing information we take the liberty of filling in the gaps ourselves. Fear loves this game. It’ll come up with elaborate possibilities to complete the story.

Take Your Time

No one wants to feel afraid, so we act fast to rid the feeling — usually through distracting ourselves. Doing this though doesn’t usually solve your problem or get rid of your fear though, it actually makes it worse.

Look at it with Curiosity

Everything we know of has its natural opposite— hot and cold, good and evil, light and dark, up and down. Well, curiosity is the natural opposite of fear. The same way water drenches fire, taking a closer look at your fear through a sense of curiosity and wonder, makes it less scary. The best way to spark curiosity? Ask, why.

Curiosity will conquer fear even more than bravery will.
— James Stephens

Final Thoughts

Fear plays a vital role in your life, but it doesn’t need to run it. Learn to listen to what it’s telling you, then use your logic and reasoning skills to decide how to handle it. Take your control back so you can spend your time on more important things than being scared.

Curious

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Katrina Paulson

Written by

Life is a curious adventure. I write words & hope they help people not be jerks to each other. Get my newsletter: https://curiousadventure.substack.com/embed

Curious

Curious

A community of people who are curious to find out what others have already figured out // Curious is a new personal growth publication by The Startup (https://medium.com/swlh).

Katrina Paulson

Written by

Life is a curious adventure. I write words & hope they help people not be jerks to each other. Get my newsletter: https://curiousadventure.substack.com/embed

Curious

Curious

A community of people who are curious to find out what others have already figured out // Curious is a new personal growth publication by The Startup (https://medium.com/swlh).

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