Some fears are necessary boundaries for living a safe life (such as the fear of jumping off a ten-story building); however, most fears can be leveraged to propel you forward towards personal and professional goals. Using the F.E.A.R.S. tool you can determine whether or not your fears are stifling your growth and how you can leverage them as opportunities live more powerfully.
Being of service to others breaks down barriers. The service can be volunteering in your community, offering to be a company mentor, or giving back to others in some way. Being of service to others will introduce you to new people, new opportunities, and even new ways of thinking that can help reframe any situation. It’s cliché but it’s true: “The more you give, the more you get.”
Sometimes you just have to rise above a certain situation or rise above tragedies in your life. Realize that rising above something doesn’t mean you no longer fear it; it simply means you’re not letting the fear control you. Instead, you’re using it to elevate you to a new level of awareness—one that can see opportunities rather than challenges.
Who do you aspire to be? What do you ultimately want to stand for? When you know your aspirations—both personally and professionally—you have a better perspective of what’s getting in your way. You can then use the image of yourself that you’re aspiring to as a tool to help you leverage your fear so you can reach your goal. For example, if you aspire to be the company CEO, but you fear public scrutiny, you can use your fear to help you become an ethical CEO—one who will pass any public scrutiny test with flying colors.
People who are empowered believe in themselves and what they can do. They feel in control and confident. So when you empower yourself in some way, you naturally leverage your fears. How you empower yourself depends on the situation. You may be able to find empowerment from books, training opportunities, mentors, or even meditation. The key is to identify where you feel a lack of control and then find the resources that will empower you to do what’s necessary.
To leverage any fear, you first need to have faith in something. It could be faith in a religious or spiritual sense of the word, or it could be a faith in yourself, in your company, in your family, in your product, etc. Without faith in something, there’s little hope for success. With faith—with a strong belief in something to ground you—you can quickly forgive yourself and/or others for any setbacks or negativity. With forgiveness comes freedom, and with freedom, anything is possible.