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5 Fearless Books To Read If You Want To Chase Your Fears Away

5 Fearless Books To Read If You Want To Chase Your Fears Away

Phobias are the most common mental disorder in the U.S, as approximately 10 percent of people in the U.S. experience phobias. Even if you are not bothered by a specific or social phobia, fear haunts us in different ways. It can affect our performance, for instance if we have a fear of public speaking or anxiety during an exam. An intense exposure to fear can even cause mental problems like panic attacks, cold sweats and other symptoms that affect our well being. There is always a way however, to deal with those fears and overcome the demons in our lives. Here is a selection of 5 books that can help you to conquer your inner fears.

Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead by Brené Brown

    Most of the times we see our vulnerability as a weakness, something we fear. Dr. Brené Brown offers an alternative view in Daring Greatly and encourages readers to embrace vulnerability and imperfection, to live wholeheartedly, and to courageously engage in our lives. The book sheds a new light on what it means to engage with our vulnerability, the reason (shame) why we are so afraid of being vulnerable, and how to combat the situation. The book will not fix your insecurities instantly, but it helps readers to realise and relate to their lives in order to move forward.

    Reading duration: 4hrs 32mins

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    Get Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead from Amazon at $13.60

    The Big Leap: Conquer Your Hidden Fear and Take Life to the Next Level by Gay Hendricks

      The Big Leap helps you learn how to jump from mediocrity to excellence. To do that, you have to learn to conquer the fears that are holding you back. Hendricks suggests in the book, that certain fears are fake, mostly because we believe ourselves to be limited.

      In the book, we learn about the four hidden barriers that many of us impose on ourselves that may limit us.  A lot of our negative emotions are self-limiting, including worry, and self-criticism, and these are the hindrance to our future success. Hendricks offers us his key to success “I expand in abundance, success, and love every day and I inspire others around me to do the same.”

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      Reading duration: 3hrs 10mins

      Get The Big Leap: Conquer Your Hidden Fear and Take Life to the Next Level from Amazon at $7.57

      Hardcore Self Help: F**k Anxiety by Robert Duff

        This book is not your regular self-help (if i might say, boring) anxiety relief book. Instead of going on and on with scientific knowledge, Duff delineates the important stuff clearly in a way anyone can understand with or without prior education in psychology. There is lots of swearing and humour, with lots of helpful and actionable information. Even if you do not suffer from anxiety, you will get a good laugh from the book.

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        Reading duration: 59mins

        Get Hardcore Self Help: F**k Anxiety from Amazon at $9.99

        The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook by Edmund J. Bourne

          The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook is a practical book with exercises for readers to follow through, such as breathing techniques and info on herbal remedies to ease generalised anxiety disorder, social anxiety, specific phobias, panic attacks, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and other anxiety-related issues. Aside from the quick and easy fix, the author provides challenging negative self-talk and mistaken beliefs, and imagery and real-life desensitisation to a step-by-step guide to slowly put your life together. If you have anxiety, this book would act as a very good supplement to a professional counsel that can be around with you for anytime.

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          Reading duration: 6hrs 54mins

          Get The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook from Amazon at $19.41

          Calm: Calm the Mind. Change the World by Michael Acton Smith

            Our daily lives are filled with tasks, stuff, people. Calm is the book to help you rediscover the pause button during your hustle and bustle. Mindfulness meditation is a proven way to reduce anxiety and stress and improve your overall well-being.

            Many people relate meditation to huge lifestyle change, a Buddhist who practices Zen, Calm is about simple and achievable habits that fit into the busy life all of us live. Expect this to be a workbook that provides you with a step-by-step guide to keeping a gratitude note every week, a ten-minute meditation that is able to fit into your bus-ride to work.

            Get Calm: Calm the Mind. Change the World from Amazon at $6.64

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            Last Updated on October 22, 2020

            The Pros and Cons of Being Self-Critical (And How to Strike a Balance)

            The Pros and Cons of Being Self-Critical (And How to Strike a Balance)

            It is easy to hear the term “self-critical” and be immediately put off. After all, it’s difficult to be our own critics. However, utilizing self-criticism means taking a more self-aware path to ensure that you aren’t overlooking any possible areas of self-improvement.

            Self-criticism affects your self-esteem and can be a useful tool to identify patterns of weakness that you can look to eradicate by adapting your behavior.

            Self-Criticism Vs Self-Deprecation

            In exploring the idea of self-criticism, one has to first consider what it means for the individual. It’s important to remember that there is a significant difference between being self-critical and being self-deprecating.

            Self-deprecation is the act of putting oneself down, sometimes in an attempt to be humorous, but oftentimes out of a place of doubt and insecurity[1].

            Self-deprecation erodes one’s confidence. It isn’t something to use lightly, as your own self-talk will play a part in defining your existence and how you are perceived, and, more importantly, in how you perceive yourself.

            At the same time, you can’t take yourself so seriously that you are unable to make light of your mistakes as you pursue self-improvement. There is, of course, a balance to be struck, and both self-criticism and self-deprecation can be utilized in moderation.

            Learning the difference between the two is the key to pursuing a productive life that will allow your successes to compound and your failures to be reduced. While self-deprecation can highlight flaws in your approach to life, self-criticism is more concerned with addressing those flaws and then acting to correct them.

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            Self-Criticism: A Roadmap for Positive Change

            Self-evaluation as a tool can open your eyes to the problematic behaviors that are derailing your goals. By identifying those behaviors, you can identify the steps to become the best version of yourself.

            “Your thoughts affect how you feel and how you behave. The way you think has the power to become a self-fulfilling prophecy.” -Amy Morin[2]

            This idea underlines the importance of not allowing self-criticism to blur into the realm of self-deprecating behavior. That will only work against you as you are attempting to constructively analyze your own behavior.

            Auditing is necessary and good. Look at industries across the board and you will find that the most successful companies, people, and products have worked hard to refine their final output. Auditing your life, schedule, clients, contacts, and more will help you to identify the good from the bad.

            If you don’t look back on what you’ve done and allow yourself to be self-critical of the areas that created more problems and less results, how will you learn how to avoid those missteps in your future endeavors?

            Auditing with critical thoughts will allow you to build your own map to success by targeting behaviors that are ineffective in your pursuit of goals, and it will help you realize the changes that need to take place in order to correct for those inefficiencies.

            The Pros of Being Self-Critical

            Self-Criticism Opens Your Eyes to Areas of Improvement

            In life, you ought to be your biggest fan and instill the confidence in yourself to show the world that you are worthy of the life that you’ve achieved up until now.

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            At the same time, however, you need to have the self-awareness to understand that you can feel like a million bucks while still having room for improvement. Learn to be self-critical enough to increase your overall success in the pursuit of your goals.

            You can check out this TED Talk with Tasha Eurich to learn more on how to improve your self-awareness:

            We all need to look in the mirror at times and work to identify the deficiencies in our own behavior in order to find room for improvement. So many people live their lives in a manner that allows no room for self-reflection and thus are missing out on key opportunities.

            For example, many people complain about not having the money to save for retirement, but instead of working to identify a solution, they assume that it cannot be fixed. Some of those individuals might find that if they challenge themselves and open themselves up to criticism, they may find the source of their problem.

            Perhaps they don’t have a proper budget in place and are spending more money than they bring in on a week-to-week basis. Being self-critical would help them realize this.

            I’d argue that if we all spent more energy evaluating our place in life, how we got there, and where we want to go, it would clear up what is missing from the equation.

            Self-Criticism Allows You to Realize Your Potential

            By working to analyze your own behaviors and identify areas that need to be improved upon, you will be able to better strive to reach your full potential in life and unlock success.

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            Being self-critical will help you to go from where you are now to where you want to be, and it will increase your self-awareness. There are so many positives to be gained by adopting a self-critical attitude.

            Read more about self-improvement: 42 Practical Ways to Improve Yourself

            The Cons of Being Self-Critical

            Self-Criticism Can Overemphasize Negatives

            The problems that could arise if one is overly self-critical are not always clear, but there are a few issues that can pop up if you start being too hard on yourself.

            If you are self-critical too often and don’t allow space in your own audit of yourself for praise, celebration, and reassurance in your victories, then you may be on a path of negative self-talk and perhaps even depression.

            If you are constantly looking for what is wrong with your actions or pursuits while failing to see what you are doing right, then you aren’t utilizing self-criticism properly. While the line is thin, there is definitely a difference between appropriate, foundation-building self-criticism, and over-zealous, confidence-eroding self-deprecation.

            Self-Criticism Can Lead to Negative Distortions of Yourself

            One struggle I often see in individuals is with their own perception of self. If you have been raised to believe that you are a failure, for example, then you may not have a healthy expectation of yourself.

            By being overly self-critical, you might be distorting your own self-image. The key here lies in utilizing the device of self-criticism correctly, which many people often do not do.

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            If utilized properly, self-criticism can be a fantastic tool, but if used incorrectly, it can have devastating effects on your own self-worth and confidence.

            Final Thoughts

            When used properly, self-criticism can be a tool for success.

            We must work hard to ensure that we are in fact exercising a constructive analysis of our own behavior and not falling into self-deprecation.

            Unfortunately, it seems as though many view the idea of being self-critical with a negative connotation. However, it can be an extremely positive and fruitful exercise if pursued with the right mindset.

            It helps tremendously when you have a community of friends and family who also help to uplift you and encourage you as you are pursuing your dreams in life.

            In evaluating your own situation and in attempting to constructively self-criticize, you should also take a look at the people you surround yourself with to try and better understand if those individuals are helping you in your aspirations or if they are holding you back as you work to better yourself.

            “We are the average of the five people we spend the most time with.” -Jim Rohn[3]

            If you work to adopt a healthy version of self-criticism and avoid allowing it to delve into self-deprecation or self-doubt, then it will serve you well as a tool to lend support to your goals and aspirations.

            More Tips About Building Self-Esteem

            Featured photo credit: Elijah O’Donnell via unsplash.com

            Reference

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