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Self-Help Advice: My Top Tips on How To Overcome Fear

If you find your life is ruled by irrational, or rational fears, then this post is definitely for you, by Rosa Fairfield.

Photographs by Linda Smith

I thought I'd write a post about fear, because, like, I'm the queen of fear. That's not some arrogant bid to say I'm completely fearless. That's more an admission that I'm probably the biggest scardy-cat on the planet. My life has been one long string of embarrassing, irrational fears.

It started when I was 6 years-old and it was windy outside... I became convinced the school would blow down and had to run to the toilet to hide and cry. Then, at playtime, I'd cling to the fence for dear life and refused to leave it because I was convinced one of the other kids would knock me over and I'd get hurt. Then there was my fear of escalators, I refused to get on the downwards ones because I thought I'd fall and die. I could really go on and on... but you've probably got the message.

The point is, yes I do have one, you can't let fear control you. I assure you, it's actually a lot less scary to just do the thing you're afraid of, than to be in a state of constant worry. After a while of just doing it, it gets a lot easier. I mean, that's not to say your pervious fear and worry won't just be replaced by a new one (I'm living proof of that), but you can deal with that too. Talking about that, here are my tips:

Just do it
This is the only solution really. I personally find thinking to be extremely unhelpful because it just leads to overthinking. If I want to push myself to do something, even if it's terrifying, I completely ignore my thoughts and act with my instincts and body instead. It does work and, at first, doing that is completely terrifying and you end up embarrassed but after a while it gets easier and you realise embarrassment isn't something to be ashamed of.

I think this is the most important one. Some people may think this sounds silly and kinda crazy, each to there own, but I think it's helpful to check in with yourself. Acknowledge how something makes you feel, your current capabilities and accept that. To give an example:

"Hey, so we're a bit socially awkward. That's okay. Let's just take it easy and do what's comfortable for us and we can take some small steps in order to expand our comfort zone. Some people may pass judgement on us for this, but that's okay. It's just there own opinion it doesn't make us less than."

It's never too late
That speaks for itself... but no matter how old your are, it's never too late to take a leap into the unknown... says the 20-something that has yet to live most of her life.

Fear isn't always bad
This sounds kinda weird but it's true... at least I think it is. It can be exhilarating; when you're doing something you love even though it scares you. Also, with fear, comes excitement. Yes, it's terrifying to do something you're afraid of but it's also exhilarating.

So, I'll leave you to decide if that was helpful at all... or just a load of waffle that the basic human being such know anyway. I'd love to hear your thoughts bellow.