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The Thrill Ride Called Life- Facing Fear with Strength and Courage

The Thrill Ride Called 'Life'
Facing Fear with Strength and Courage

And the day came when the risk it took to remain tight inside the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.' Anais Nin

Recently I have been talking with many people who are struggling financially, facing major changes and life decisions, and are feeling down, somewhat desperate, and in a state of disarray. Yet I noticed some of these same people getting excited about the thrill that Halloween brings. Hmmmm... fascinating. What is it about the thrill of Halloween that can be so appealing, while fear in life can be dreadfully paralyzing?

It seems to come down to fear of the unknown and insecurity. We can have fun trick-or-treating, going to a scary movie, haunted house, or Halloween party. The anticipation of not knowing what will happen is exciting, and we feel confident that we will be back in our warm, snugly beds when all is said and done. Life challenges are different though. When will I get a job? What if I run out of money? Will I get more customers? Will the economy get better or worse? There is no deadline as to when we will have the answers. So many 'what ifs'. What if you stayed in the present, and worked on cleaning things up, raising your standards, creating a stronger personal foundation, and took new and different actions? In most cases, we can look back and see how we became stronger and wiser during such challenging times. What are you learning from this situation? Often these are pivotal moments that place our lives on the right track again. So get rid of the 'what ifs' and embrace the present know matter how disheveled it may be.

Fear is the anticipation of danger, a defense mechanism that alerts you to a possible future event. It helps us to set boundaries to protect ourselves in the presence of danger. Analyze the message that fear is sending you. Are you in danger? What are you really afraid of? If you feel you are in danger of losing your security, then take action to build it back up again. You have choices! Start looking in places you haven't looked before. Step beyond your comfort zone. Take new actions to create new results. If you lost a loved one through divorce or death, then start building new relationships one small step at a time. If you can not find a job, then make a change in your job search. Change the action to change the result. Change can be a sign of growth, so stop fearing it and get excited. Stop suffering and start strengthening.

What if you are not in danger and it is just your active inner critic holding you back from the one thing you keep thinking about? The title of Susan Jeffers book says it all 'Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway.' Take time to watch kids. I have seen some of the most uncoordinated kids end up as good athletes. The more you do something the better you get. Kids prove it over and over again while learning to walk, talk, read, write, ride bike, climb, speak in front of others, draw, dance, study, play sports, etc. Consider that at birth we were given every human trait to access when we choose. Don't just choose one of these traits and make that your identity. Practice being more courageous and you will become more courageous. Yes, it is a good idea to orient your life around your strengths. However, you know that thing you really want to try but for whatever reason you keep talking yourself out of it? Try it out with low expectations. Just do it for the experience of doing it. It is a thrill when you step outside the box and do something new. The first 30 minute talk a gave was a huge step for me. I went with the attitude that I wanted to finish, touch one person, and have it be a learning experience, and I did. What a high! Did I wow the audience? No. Did I learn, gain experience, gain contacts, get a new client, and receive comments and notes of support? Yes. Start with small steps. Let me know how it turns out.

Do not allow fear to paralyze and control you. Be your own biggest supporter. Embrace the thrills that life has to offer... Starting Now!

Taking Action:
Live in the present, learn, and gain strength.
Analyze the message fear is sending you. Are you in danger? What are you really afraid of?
Take action. Look at all of your choices.
New actions lead to new results.
Step beyond your comfort zone.
Be your own greatest supporter.
Have a Happy Halloween!

Please send your thoughts and comments. I would love to hear from you!
Copyright 2002, Beth A. Tabak. All rights reserved.

Beth Tabak is a Professional Life Coach and owner of Starting Now. She works with people nationwide to reach their goals in a faster period of time while upgrading all areas of their life. To learn more about Beth's coaching services visit or e-mail To obtain a free take action tips booklet '101 Tips to Create an Extraordinary Life' e-mail and put '101 Tips' in the subject area. Your e-mail address will not be distributed.

Beth Tabak is a Professional Life Coach and the owner of Starting Now. She works with clients around the country via teleconference to reach their goals in a faster period of time and upgrade all areas of their life. For more information visit or e-mail Beth at


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