Fear is a toddler with square shaped toast.


Fear has one setting. On or Off!

It’s like a toddler. Toddlers scream. They scream regardless of whether they scraped their knee, they had a bad dream, they banged their head or their toast is cut in the wrong shape. Parents learn pretty to react differently to the screams of our toddlers - checking first if they are damaged or in danger and then finding out what caused the scream before determining how to respond to it. If every-time our toddler screamed we ran into the room screaming at the same pitch and with the same intensity, thumb poised over the emergency services number we wouldn’t get through a single day - we wouldn't get anything done!

So consider fear and how you respond to.

Fear will scream whether you are in mortal danger or if taking that action might be a bit embarrassing. It’s all the same to fear because fear has one job to do - alert you to potential danger - whether that danger is to your physical self or your ego, whether it is real or perceived.

As I've said before you can’t (and shouldn’t) ignore or eliminate fear but you can learn to modify your response to it. Try entering into a respectful conversation with fear and find out what’s really bothering it and then calmly and courteously talk it down from the ledge. As you practise this the conversation will get shorter and your position of authority will get stronger until you no longer need to persuade fear, you’ll just respond to its screams with a polite “thank you for your input, but I’m doing it anyway”. 

Homework - this was actually the assignment I set in the last creative coaching session I gave.

1. Give fear an animal alter-ego (so that you can put a face to the name). 

2. Write yourself a letter from fear to you and creativity. Give fear the stage to tell you everything that worries it. All the worst case scenarios. All the drama that might unfold. Allow fear this chance to get it all off his chest.

3. Respond to fear. Be polite, be respectful. Value fear’s concerns. But tell fear that you are in charge and you have looked at the potential consequences and these are your considered conclusions.