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Conquer Fear and Anxiety in Tough Times

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Conquer Your Fear

emotional masteryDuring this unprecedented trying time, it is natural to experience fear. Fear is nature’s way of protecting you from real and current danger. It prepares you to escape from harm. You experience fear when you anticipate a loss or an injury. All of a sudden, you may be afraid to touch surfaces that could be contaminated. When your personal space is violated and you don’t have protective paraphernalia to shield yourself, your fight or flight response may kick in.

You can start to minimize your fears by facing them. Determine what you are afraid of and then take the best actions to resolve the threats that are causing the fear. Working through fear is far better than living with feelings of immobility and helplessness. Your security lies not in what you have, but in the knowledge that you can cope with whatever crosses your path.

Most accomplishments are achieved with some fear. You can acknowledge and deal with your greatest fear right now. You can take the best actions to overcome it.

Empower yourself by using the Optimal Thinking formula: 

  1. Accept
  2. Understand
  3. Optimize

Answer questions like:

  • What’s the truth here?
  • What am I afraid of?
  • Am I risking more than I can afford to lose?
  • What do I need to feel safe?
  • What’s the best way of handling this?
  • How can I make the most of this?

Keep in mind the words of Nelson Mandela, “As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

Conquer Your Anxiety

conquer anxiety audioAs the coronavirus continues to spread, we are all uncertain about what will happen in the future. Anxiety is the fear of a possible or unknown future threat. It is normal to feel anxious when we are faced with potential health threats or economic hardship. Anxiety varies in form and intensity and can be based on real or imagined situations.

You can feel uncertain, edgy, apprehensive, worried, insecure, nervous, or terrified, and may experience physical symptoms such as “butterflies in your stomach.” You sense that something bad is about to happen.

During this tough time, avoid creating unnecessary anxiety by dwelling on remote negative possibilities with “what if’s.” To understand how you create anxiety, you can ask questions like:

  • Why do I feel anxious?
  • Am I afraid that something bad is about to happen?
  • What is causing me to feel threatened?
  • What am I afraid of losing?
  • What am I thinking or doing to create this?
  • What can I learn from this?

Feelings of anxiety are best eliminated not by defensively denying or ignoring them, but again, by removing the threat that’s causing them. By taking the best actions possible, you optimize your self-reliance and achieve the highest level of control over your environment.

You can minimize your anxiety by asking questions to invite resolution. Focus specifically on the best ways to achieve what you want. Allow your anxiety to protect you by answering these optimal questions:

  • What is the best thing I can do to remove the threat(s)?
  • Which changes in my thinking are necessary to create safety/security in my life?
  • How can I best prepare myself to handle this?
  • What’s the best action I can take to prevent the loss and minimize the pain?
  • What’s the most constructive action I can take to achieve what I want?
  • What is the wisest action I can take under the circumstances?

How Optimal Thinking Fits In

When the cost of failure is high,  optimism is the wrong strategy.  Instead of hoping for the best, fit is best to use Optimal Thinking and ask:  What the best thing I/we can do under these circumstances? In high risk situations, Optimal Thinkers take the most constructive actions to achieve the best outcome while we best prepare for the worst outcome.

Optimal Thinkers accept what is out of our control, and optimize what is within our control.  Every situation – even a disaster – is an opportunity to be our best.  We conquer fear and anxiety by taking the wisest actions to achieve our highest priorities.  How quickly and often we optimize is what counts.

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5 Responses to “Conquer Fear and Anxiety in Tough Times”

  1. Robert P says:

    This post was a game changer for me. I couldn’t adjust to working at home and have been anxious about financial loss. I’m back on the right track. Thanks.

  2. Lauren C says:

    Rosalene, thank you for this article. I’ve been following you since I heard you speak at the Women’s Leadership Conference in San Francisco 15 years ago. I’ve circulated the link to this article to our employees, all working from home, and many experiencing anxiety. The feedback is “Keep them coming!”

  3. Phil Brown says:

    Thanks so much for this excellent post. My family and team are using it to keep us sane during this hard time.

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