As someone who faces fear head-on in my daily working life, I believe I’m highly qualified to advise on fear coping strategies that work. This means I can show YOU exactly how to smash through any fear-based challenges that are holding you back in life, keeping you from achieving your dreams.
Hi, my name is Curtis Rivers and I’m an award winning Hollywood Stuntman and Guinness World Record holder. I also help people through my books, seminars and speaking engagements.
In todays blog, I wanted to help you realize that nearly all of the things that hold us back in life, are fear based.
So if I gave you some tools to overcome fear, it stands to reason that your obstacles would dissolve right? Leaving you to step forward at speed to realize your dreams.
When we crunch down most of our emotions to the root cause, they are based in either fear or they are based in love. I know that may sound unusual if it’s the first time you’ve heard that, but trust me – you have fear at one side of the sliding scale, and love on the other. You feel a certain way about a decision or direction you’re taking, based on where on the scale that particular decision or direction lies.
For example, you might be very comfortable in business contacting people via email, and so put off making important phone calls because you prefer email. This may result in lesser business success because people are not reading or responding to emails as quickly as they would your phone calls.
In this example, the preference to emails might exist because the person LOVEs to write, LOVEs to be able to put everything down in writing, check the spelling and the core message, check the links, and send the email only when it’s 100% correct. They might LOVE the fact that they have a record of the ‘conversation’ via the email thread, and LOVE the ability to go back and check what’s been said.
The same person might hate talking on the phone, they FEAR they will stumble or stammer, they FEAR that they will forget to mention an important point, they FEAR that if they give a web link over the phone, it will be copied down wrong and an opportunity missed. They FEAR they will not be able to make enough notes, as they don’t know shorthand, and FEAR their regional accent might make them difficult to understand. Perhaps there’s a lack of confidence on the phone (another FEAR based emotion) and perhaps they FEAR that this will make them appear unprofessional.
Can you see how the positive emotions and thought processes can be based in LOVE and how the negative emotions and thought processes can be based in FEAR?
If you really consider what holds you back, and be really honest with yourself, you’ll find a fear based emotion or thought process as the root cause.
Someone putting off starting a new business might say “I would be very successful – I just don’t have enough time” – I’d respond by asking “What are you afraid of? Set the alarm clock 60 minutes earlier every day and use those 7 hours to set up the new business. Go to bed an hour earlier if you’re concerned – what would happen if you did that? What’s to be afraid of?" On scratching the surface, I’d most likely discover a fear based thought process, such as the fear of starting the business and failing, or the fear of looking like a failure to family and friends, or the fear of their current boss finding out and firing them, or the fear of…you get my point.
The Law of Relativity
At this stage I’d like to introduce another of the Universal Laws I spoke of in a recent blog. I mentioned the Law of Polarity recently and would now like to mention The Law of Relativity. We tend to think of Einstein when we mention relativity, of time travel, wormholes and quantum theory. However, the Law of Relativity also dictates that when we perceive a certain condition, it’s only that way ‘relative’ to something else.
Let me explain by drawing your attention to the diagram of the 3 people below.
Look at Person B in the middle. If he were talking to Person A, he might say he is taller than her. However, he is only a tall person ‘relative’ to Person A.
If Person C came along, he is, technically, no longer a tall person, certainly not in ‘relation’ to Person C.
In truth he is neither tall nor small, he simply ‘is’. Only by comparing his stature to other people, can he decide if he is taller or smaller, in relation to them. Does that make sense?
I’m six feet two inches in height, I consider myself tall, however – I’m only tall relative to the people in my daily life. If I spend a day with a pro basketball team, I would feel small. An alien arriving at the basketball game would refer to me as the ‘small, chubby one’ in relation to the 7ft tall, skinny basketball player. Yet, if the same alien met me grabbing water in a fast-food restaurant, he might refer to me as the ‘tall, skinny one’. Not that everybody eating fast food is rotund of course. :-)
Do you see my point? We perceive everything in our life; we label people and situations as if they were fact, when in reality they are only that way ‘relative’ to their environment. This is the Law of Relativity, and plays a key role in how I bypass fear, and accelerate my journey from where I am now, to exactly where I want to be.
Let’s take the blog you’re reading now as an example.
I’m very new to blogging. Sure, I’ve been writing for years – I’ve written articles for a few newspapers and magazines, and recently finished my first book ‘Seven Paths to Freedom’.
However, being new to blogging, it would be easy for me to doubt my ability as a blogger, or doubt my ability to convey a point. Also I might even doubt my expertise on the subject matter I’m writing about. This lack of confidence, along with all of the other ‘doubts’ are fear based. Plain and simple.
Using ‘The Law of Relativity’, we ask “Compared to what?”. Let’s imagine that it was YOU having these doubts, and I was talking you through your fears…
You: “I’m new to blogging”
Me: “Compared to what?”
You: “Well, compared to people who’ve written 10,000 blogs”.
Me: “Sure, so is this your first blog?”
Me: “Have you written more than one before?”
You: “Yes, I’ve written about 50 blogs prior to this one”
Me: “I see. So compared to someone starting out, who has only written 5
blogs, you’ve written TEN TIMES as much content, right?”
blogs, you’ve written TEN TIMES as much content, right?”
You: “Well, yes”
Me: “So relative to the beginner, you’re the expert – that new blogger would listen to your advice, as you’re ten times more experienced?”
You: “I suppose so.”
Me: “And your readers, these people reading your blogs – are they prolific blog authors themselves? Or are they for the most part, the general public who have never written a blog?”
You: “Well, they don’t write blogs.”
Me: “So to them, you really are THE expert! You’ve written FIFTY blogs on this subject – wow. Compared to them, you really are a blogger with so many articles under your belt. You have a lot to say, and they want to hear it, right?
You: “Well, put like that that, yes – I suppose I’m not really new to blogging, and I have written a lot of blogs. Thank you.
You see how this works? Compared to a person blogging for years, this person had FEAR because they were comparing themselves to the more experienced person.
They were using The Law of Relativity AGAINST them!
Don’t do that. Use the Universal Laws by working in line with them, like swimming with the current, not against it, and everything in your life effortlessly falls into place.
As soon as the person in this example flipped their thinking, and focused instead on the fact that the people reading their blogs hadn’t written anywhere near the amount of blogs they’d written – a shift occurred. They realized that relative to their readers, they really were the expert, and their blogs were accepted and well received.
The FEAR of not being experienced enough, was replaced with the LOVE of knowing they were more than experienced enough, and admired as an expert helping people. As they LOVE to write blogs and help people, they have shifted from a place of fear to a place of love, they have slid from one side of the sliding scale to the other. Simply by changing the way they thought about a subject.
I’ve yet to come across a negative situation that was not based in fear as the root cause. And I’ve yet to discover a situation that could not be turned around by asking ‘compared to what?’
Let’s close by looking at a common extreme fear – the fear of heights.
I’ve chosen this one because I have my own healthy fear of heights, yet haven’t allowed that fear to stop me jumping off tall buildings in the movies, or breaking world records from extreme heights.
The fear of heights is largely universal. It’s a very healthy ‘self-defence’ mechanism built into the oldest part of our brain, which saved our ancestors from falling to their deaths, and preserved the species so that you could be reading this now!
In this final example, let us use ‘The Law of Relativity’ to ask a frightened first time parachutist, “Compared to what?”. Let’s imagine you’re making a tandem parachute jump for charity, and are having second thoughts as you approach the aircraft. Let’s pretend I am your instructor.
You: “What am I doing? I’m about to partake in the most dangerous sport in the world”
Me: “Compared to what?”
You: “Well, compared to any other hobbies people do outside of work”
Me: “Not really. Did you know that statistically, skydiving is actually very safe? Due to modern equipment design and safety practices, did you know that ‘fly fishing’ is more dangerous than skydiving?”
Me: “It’s true. Many more people are killed and injured in fly fishing related accidents than in sport parachuting.”
You: “Well, not as a hobby then, as a profession. You must have the most dangerous job in the world jumping out of airplanes every day?”
Me: “Compared to what? Yes, dangerous compared to being an accountant, but not compared to thousands of other jobs, like the construction industry for example. The construction industry is the most dangerous job – people are being killed often in that sector.”
You: “OK - but what if the chute doesn’t open?”
Me: “I’ve never had a chute malfunction ever. But if it did, I have a reserve”
You: “What if the reserve doesn’t open?”
Me: “I’ve never had a main canopy fail to deploy, and I’ve never seen or heard of a reserve chute not opening in 25 years of skydiving”
You: “Well, what if I’m too scared to jump?”
Me: “We will land the plane and you’ll have enjoyed a free plane ride to 16,000ft”
You: “I’m just having second thoughts, I mean I’m over weight, and not very physical”
Me: “Compared to what? Compared to who?I’ve had 200 pound guys recovering from heart surgery do tandem parachute jumps, and I’ve had physically disabled people jump with me. Are you overweight compared to the 200 pound man?
Me: “Are you ‘not very physical’ compared to the wheelchair bound people who’ve jumped with me?
You: “Well, no, of course not”
Me: “So what you’re telling me is that you’re not ‘that’ over weight, and have no real physical problems holding you back. You were excited to do this parachute jump but had natural concerns. You now know that skydiving is statistically safer than fly fishing, the main chutes always open, and if this becomes the first ever use of the reserve parachute, they always open. Also, if you really change your mind, you can always come down in the plane. Is that right?
You: “Well, put like that that, yes – I suppose I’m being silly. Thanks for explaining – I’m excited again. Let’s do this!
You see how using The Law of Relativity can help face even the most primal fears?
People allow themselves to be held back for all sorts of reasons, which ultimately are based in fear. By asking ourselves “Relative to what?” or “Compared to who?” we switch our attention from fear to love, and get a balanced view.
I’d like to challenge you to do the following:
(a) Watch out for limiting beliefs you may have, that are holding you back. Then I want you to…
(b) Consider where the fear is. What are you scared of?
(c) Finally, ask yourself “Compared to what?”
An example of how the answers to the above questions play out -
(a) I might not make as much money working for myself, as I earn now.
(b) The fear of making less than the $30,000 I earn now, which is good.
(c) Compared to what? The $30,000 is good compared to what? You’re comparing it to the $15,000 the cashiers make at the local food store, what if you compare that to the $100,000 a year that others in your line of work make? Or the $200,000 a year that the area CEO makes, the $500,000 the national director makes a year? Suddenly the $30,000 doesn’t seem so much! You could earn much MORE than the $30,000 if you have the guts to set up alone – go for it!
I’d like to thank you for taking the time to read this blog, and ask you to take on board this method of approaching fear. I have other techniques that I’m going to share with you, that mesh well with The Law of Relativity – look out for those soon.
In the meantime, imagine a world where you had nothing holding you back. Imagine pausing as a challenge approaches, changing the way you perceive that challenge, and then stepping over it to continue your journey. It’s possible, if I can do it, then anyone can do it – including you.
Wishing You Great Success