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This One Simple Question Can Help You Tackle Your Fear And Make The Best Decision

This One Simple Question Can Help You Tackle Your Fear And Make The Best Decision

How many times have you been in a situation where you were about to do something of huge importance to you for the first time, or where you were faced with making an important decision and you felt so paralyzed by fear that you couldn’t concentrate on simple tasks, let alone tackle those big decisions or actions you were supposed to? Fear has a way of doing it to us, making us incapable of doing what we, essentially want, but for some reasons, can’t do. More so, fear sneaks up on us only when we are dealing with issues that truly matter to us, such as our education, work, relationships and health.

The reasons most of us feel fear

In order to help ourselves deal with fear in a much more effective way, we need to discover reasons for its existence in the first place. The reason many of us feel fearful when faced with big decisions in life, is simply because they are big, and could totally change the direction of our lives for better or for worse. There is so much at stake and many of us feel trapped because of the pressure that importance of the decision implies. Additionally, many dealt with the low self-confidence that makes them feel incompetent in making life-changing decisions. And, of course, the number one reason – our unwillingness to step outside our comfort zone. For most people fear is the first response when they are about to make a change, since it is in our nature, as humans, to feel far more secure when we are in a familiar place, no matter how bad it may be, than to move into better, but unfamiliar territory.

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The question to end fear

Our coping mechanisms to deal with fear include everything from deep breathing exercises to yoga, meditation and physical exercises. Even though helpful, these don’t actually get to the core of the problem. They help us lessen the fear in a certain situation, yet the same feeling comes each time we are faced with a similar situation.

In order to successfully tackle and eventually eliminate fear entirely, we need to ask ourselves one simple question – “What’s the worst that could happen?” In this way, we are acknowledging the fear and, as we ask additional questions, we are playing the worst possible scenario in our head, which eventually soothes us as we can become better prepared for all possible outcomes. The approach was suggested by Iyanla Vanzant, motivational speaker and New York Times best-selling author. Vanzant suggests that the approach helps to efficiently eliminate the power of fear: “Often by simply identifying the fear—and figuring out a concrete way to deal with it should it come true—you remove a lot of its power to control your decision-making.”

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Start eliminating fear with one simple question

Even though fear has been present in our lives for as long as we can remember, it doesn’t mean we can’t do anything about it. By using the one question approach, we can identify our fears and face them head on, which will result in their complete elimination over time.

For example, if your goal is to inspire others, and provide support for people who want to achieve their goals, you might experience fear of public speaking just as you are about to step in front of the bigger audience for the first time. Since this is still an unknown territory for you, and your desire to make it is strong, your comfort zone is resisting shifting, you may feel extremely uncomfortable, to say the least. Knowing what you now know, you would want to take some time to have a quick talk with yourself. Ask yourself “What’s the worst that could happen?” “If that happens, then what? And then what?” As your worst case scenario has already been played out in your head, you will soon realize that you are much stronger than you may think. This approach relieves us from the pressure we feel and the fear of not making it. And, the best part is that once the pressure is off, our clarity returns and our performance levels enhance, making those worst case scenarios almost impossible. As we practice this approach a couple of times, our brain will soon pick up the new behavior as a coping mechanism, and the process will become much more effortless until we eventually eliminate all fear from our lives.

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Next time you start feeling insecure and fearful about an important life decision, make sure to break the fear down by using these questions until you have no fear left to cope with.

Featured photo credit: https://unsplash.com/ via unsplash.com

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Ana Erkic

Social Media Consultant, Online Marketing Strategist, Copywriter, CEO and Co-Founder of Growato

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Last Updated on December 2, 2018

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

When giving a presentation or speech, you have to engage your audience effectively in order to truly get your point across. Unlike a written editorial or newsletter, your speech is fleeting; once you’ve said everything you set out to say, you don’t get a second chance to have your voice heard in that specific arena.

You need to make sure your audience hangs on to every word you say, from your introduction to your wrap-up. You can do so by:

1. Connecting them with each other

Picture your typical rock concert. What’s the first thing the singer says to the crowd after jumping out on stage? “Hello (insert city name here)!” Just acknowledging that he’s coherent enough to know where he is is enough for the audience to go wild and get into the show.

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It makes each individual feel as if they’re a part of something bigger. The same goes for any public speaking event. When an audience hears, “You’re all here because you care deeply about wildlife preservation,” it gives them a sense that they’re not just there to listen, but they’re there to connect with the like-minded people all around them.

2. Connect with their emotions

Speakers always try to get their audience emotionally involved in whatever topic they’re discussing. There are a variety of ways in which to do this, such as using statistics, stories, pictures or videos that really show the importance of the topic at hand.

For example, showing pictures of the aftermath of an accident related to drunk driving will certainly send a specific message to an audience of teenagers and young adults. While doing so might be emotionally nerve-racking to the crowd, it may be necessary to get your point across and engage them fully.

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3. Keep going back to the beginning

Revisit your theme throughout your presentation. Although you should give your audience the credit they deserve and know that they can follow along, linking back to your initial thesis can act as a subconscious reminder of why what you’re currently telling them is important.

On the other hand, if you simply mention your theme or the point of your speech at the beginning and never mention it again, it gives your audience the impression that it’s not really that important.

4. Link to your audience’s motivation

After you’ve acknowledged your audience’s common interests in being present, discuss their motivation for being there. Be specific. Using the previous example, if your audience clearly cares about wildlife preservation, discuss what can be done to help save endangered species’ from extinction.

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Don’t just give them cold, hard facts; use the facts to make a point that they can use to better themselves or the world in some way.

5. Entertain them

While not all speeches or presentations are meant to be entertaining in a comedic way, audiences will become thoroughly engaged in anecdotes that relate to the overall theme of the speech. We discussed appealing to emotions, and that’s exactly what a speaker sets out to do when he tells a story from his past or that of a well-known historical figure.

Speakers usually tell more than one story in order to show that the first one they told isn’t simply an anomaly, and that whatever outcome they’re attempting to prove will consistently reoccur, given certain circumstances.

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6. Appeal to loyalty

Just like the musician mentioning the town he’s playing in will get the audience ready to rock, speakers need to appeal to their audience’s loyalty to their country, company, product or cause. Show them how important it is that they’re present and listening to your speech by making your words hit home to each individual.

In doing so, the members of your audience will feel as if you’re speaking directly to them while you’re addressing the entire crowd.

7. Tell them the benefits of the presentation

Early on in your presentation, you should tell your audience exactly what they’ll learn, and exactly how they’ll learn it. Don’t expect them to listen if they don’t have clear-cut information to listen for. On the other hand, if they know what to listen for, they’ll be more apt to stay engaged throughout your entire presentation so they don’t miss anything.

Featured photo credit: Flickr via farm4.staticflickr.com

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