5 Reasons To Kick Fears Ass

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Watch Out Fear!

5 Reasons To Kick Fears Ass

“I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.”

― Frank Herbert, Dune

Fear is wonderful and terrible all at the same time. Fear compels us to take risks, but it also traps us. Fear adds exhilaration and excitement to life, but it can also add anxiety and paralysis.

At it’s best fear asks us to face ourselves. At it’s worst it keeps us from being who we truly are.

The Evil Boss

I once caught my boss stealing from bands at a job I had. I was scared to death to stand up to her. But eventually I faced my fear and confronted her.

She made arguments. She made excuses. And she cried. Fake cried.

And despite her assurances, I still lost my job. For some time I thought confronting her was a mistake.

But over time, I realized that the incident had taught me a lot. I learned that something mattered to me more than having a cool job. I learned that I had integrity. And I learned I had the guts to stand up to a person in power.


Before all of this happened I had spent years avoiding myself and avoiding my fears. I did it through drugs, through relationships, through TV, and through endless distraction.

I avoided looking for my true self, because I was afraid that my true self was a loser, a jerk, a failure, and a fool.

But when I finally faced this big fear by confronting my boss, everything changed. I realized there was something good inside of me. Because the loser, or the jerk I feared I was, would have kept his mouth shut.

When I spoke up, I realized that I could have faith in myself. That I could trust myself. And from that trust, I was able to make real change. I was able to begin embodying who I truly was.

Facing Fear and Being You.

Here are some of the reasons and practice I use to face my fears.

1. Who I Want To Be

I face my fears because that is who I want to be. I don’t want to be someone who avoids their fear and who lives on the run.

When we give into fear, when we close our eyes, and just ignore what scares us. It hurts. There is some part of us that sighs and feels cheated. And we feel like we can’t trust ourselves.

So I remind myself daily that I am a person who faces fear. And just by doing this, I become that kind of person.

2. The World I Want to Live In

I don’t want to live in a world of fear. So I try to change it, by facing my fear. I face them imperfectly, slowly, and sometimes painfully.

At one point people lived in a world with slaves, but other people weren’t willing to accept that. And they changed it. Slowly and painfully. But they changed it.

But even though it’s hard I remind myself, I’m not facing this fear for me. But to make the world a better place.

3.Trust in the Truth

I’ve found that most of what I fear is the truth.

I’m afraid to admit that I’m going to die someday. I’m afraid to admit that I’m not exceptional. I’m afraid to admit I could be more compassionate and wise.

But time has taught me to trust the truth. Because truth is where transformation is found. When I face the truth, I change my life. When I avoid the truth, I stay the same.

Whenever I meet a fear I don’t want to face, I ask myself, “What do I want to trust? Do I want to trust my fear or the truth on the other side? And when the answer is clear, I find the only choice is to face my fear.

4. Following My Heart

I love my brain. It’s great at doing taxes and making grocery lists. But when it comes to doing what’s right, it’s like a dream catcher full of fear.

My heart on the other hand knows what’s up. Whenever I follow my heart, my life goes better. And best of all my heart is willing to face fear.

My heart is used to fear. It’s faced it with every new friend, girlfriend, or dream. So whenever fear ties my brain in knots. I close my eyes and follow my heart.

5. Facing Myself

Whenever I face my fear, I face myself. And facing myself is the hardest and most rewarding thing I’ve ever done.

Whenever I’ve been afraid to talk to a cute girl, apply for a job, or even go skydiving. I’ve had to face a part of myself that is uncertain, shy, and unclear. And each time I face it I become stronger.

So whenever I find a fear that seems impossible. I remember how important it is to face myself and do my best to put on a smile and meet myself again.


10 Mindful Declarations of Independence

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Freedoom,… just scream it loud out

Celebrate Freedom by Freeing your mind
– 10 Mindful Declarations of Independence

This 4th of July I find myself asking this question: How can I honor the freedom I’ve been given?

I’m not going to fight in a war, becoming xenophobic isn’t my style, and just waving a flag doesn’t seem like enough. Freedom means more to me that freedom of speech or religion.

For me freedom means trying to live a life free of all the things that hold me back.
So with that in mind I offer:

10 Mindful Declarations of Independence

1. Declare independence from limiting self-definitions
We are so good at defining ourselves in limiting ways. We are constantly saying what we can’t do, who we aren’t, and what holds us back. But so rarely do we challenge these definitions.

I have had clients tell me they don’t like to exercise and later tell me how much they love to get out and move. When we repeat limiting definitions we only reinforce what holds us back. But when we challenge those definitions in thought and action we often find they were never true to begin with.

2. Declare independence from doing something else while you eat.
We spend approximately 38,003 hours of our lives eating. That’s over 4 years! Unfortunately, we spend most of those hours not paying attention to our food.

When we read, watch, and text at every meal we are loosing all the joy of tasting smelling, chewing, and delighting in everything eating has to offer. When we pay attention to even just a few bites of every meal we grow our capacity for appreciation and add years of pleasure to our lives.

3. Declare independence from stuff you don’t need.
If you have ever taken a long trip, you quickly relize how little you actually need. Yet, we fill our lives with so much stuff.

When we acquire more than we need we lose ourselves. Our priorites get mixed up in the process of buying, caring for, and organizing everything we own. When we let go of the things we don’t need we get more time to do things we love.

4. Declare independence from believing critical thoughts.
We all have critical thoughts. And even though we’d like to get rid of them, doing so is hard and maybe not so beneficial.

When we identify with critical thought we lose faith and become afraid to fail. When we create space from critical thinking and realize those thoughts aren’t who we are. We can learn from their wisdom without being debilitated by their perspective.

5. Declare independence from comparing yourself to fitness models and celebrities.
Aspiration is great, but comparison isn’t. We each have our own paths through this world and each of our stories is as beautiful as it is unique.

When we compare ourselves to celebrities and fitness models we do ourselves the disservice of not honoring our own journey. When we start to look at our own lives and bodies with admiration, we generate amazing energy and find more peace in every day of our lives.

6. Declare independence from your iPod, iPhone, and iPad.
I love technology as much as the next person, but it’s important to be able to put these things aside.

When we spend every moment looking at, listening to, or typing on some device we don’t allow space for reflection or change. When we set these things aside for even a short time, we find we can connect more, reflect more, and be present in a way we’ve forgotten.

7. Declare independence from letting fear stop you.
There is nothing wrong with being afraid. In fact, fear tells us that we are alive and that we care. But we mustn’t let fear rule our lives.

When we let fear control us we shrink the scope of what is possible. When face our fears, we gain the confidence to take risks and the faith to endure whatever comes our way.

8. Declare independence from multitasking
Multitasking should be defined as trying to do many things poorly.

When we try to increase our efficiency by doing two or more things at a time we not only lose our focus, but we also lose ability to perform with excellence. When we unitask we perform better and allow ourselves to become absorbed fully in what we are doing. And full absorption is the foundation of great joy.

9. Declare independence from letting your mind control you
Your mind is not the boss of you. It likes to think it is, but it likes to think all sorts of things.
Although your mind is a powerful ally, its perspective is limited.

When we allow our minds to become dictators of our lives, trouble ensues. But when we balance the power of our minds with the compassion and intuition of our hearts, we learn to live life less like a math problem and more like a creative writing project.

10. Decleare independence from independence itself.
We can’t do any of the things listed above without help from others.

When we think we could or should do everything on our own, we vastly limit our own potential. When we ask for help and acknowledge all we receive, we grow our capacity for gratitude and ability to do amazing things with our lives.

It is my hope that you will join me on this 4th of July in reflecting on our freedom and try to find new ways to expand our horizons. Though I have been given a lot by living in this democracy, that gift pales in comparison to the gift I can give myself and others when I slow down, pay attention, and let go of the things that hold me back.

What do your want to declare your independence from?




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