Overcoming fear in 6 steps

Michelle Poler

Michelle Poler

Founder of Hello Fears

This week I saw for the first time the video of the little penguin trying to jump into the water from a diving board at a Zoo. Besides being the cutest thing ever and penguins being one of my favorite creatures, it clearly demonstrated the way we all approach our fears. Who knew animals felt the same way? By facing 100 fears I learned that there's a natural, sort of predictable process of facing fear, so I decided to compare the penguin's behavior to my behavior when I attempted to jump off a cliff at a waterpark about a month ago as part of my fear #95.

First, comes the discovery stage. It is that moment where you identify something you’re scared of. Then, we move into the denial stage where we completely ignore the fact that we’re indeed scared of this thing. Most of the people stay in this stage making their own lives easy and comfortable. A small percentage of the people decide to move into the next phase: the determination stage. This is when you decide to go for it, so you make all the necessary arrangements to go for it. Between determination stage and action stage there’s a hard-to-avoid-stage I call the WTF Am I Doing stage. Here’s when you start to overthink the decision you made to face your fear. You exaggerate every possible outcome making it look like the worst case scenario. Many people stop the process right here. Some of us, for some weird reason decide to move past our worst thoughts and land into the action stage. This is when, no matter how nonbeliever you are, you turn to g-d and ask him to be with you while you face your fear, and you go for it! 
This brings you to the celebratory stage where you want to tell everybody what you did, and you experience what feeling proud of yourself actually feels like. I also I call this stage, the “sheepish or shameful,” here’s when you really regret your foolish behaviour during the WTF stage and realize that it wasn’t as bad as you thought; trust me, I’ve faced 100 of them already. These 6 steps repeat themselves over and over again.

overcomingfearinsixsteps

So, what's your process when it comes to facing a fear? Let me know in the comments if you can relate to mine or if you go a different route! 


Source: 100dayswithoutfear.com 

Want to bring Michelle to your next event? Let us know here. We'd love to help you make it happen! 

Courage Is Switching Careers
What do you want to be when you grow up? A daunting question we get asked often when we're kids. Then we get asked things related to marriage, kids, money. But, what if the thing you thought you wanted to be when you grew up is not the thing that your adult self is meant to do? Oh, oh, hello fear. I grew up as the artist of the family; we...
Read More
Would You Rather Be Fearless Or Brave?
Two people are determined to jump from a high cliff into the water. One has no problem with it, loves heights, the adrenaline and that empty feeling in the stomach. The other person is completely terrified to give the step, but decides to fight that and jumps anyways. Who is braver? Which person do you admire more? Which one can teach you a life...
Read More
How Speaking at TEDx Changed My Life (One Year Later)
A year ago today, on October 18th 2015, I faced my 100th fear at a TEDx stage. This has proved to be one of the best decisions of my life. When my project,100 Days Without Fear, wentviralsomething really exciting happened. I got the attention of a well known global brand that its concept was very much aligned to what I was doing. The bran...
Read More
Our Needs Are Screwing Us Up Big Time
World Domination Summit Without even noticing it, many of our actions are dictated by others' expectations. By paying close attention to the behavior of people around me, I realized that our needs not only motivate us likeAbraham Maslow once said, but they also limit us. They limit our growth, our potential, our authenticity. In efforts t...
Read More
Creative Mornings Talk!
On December 18th, exactly 2 months after I spoke at TEDx, I had the opportunity to speak atCreative Morningsin NYC in their last event of the year: Audience Takes the Stage. I received an email from CM, asking the community members to send a video describing how would they tackle this month's topic on stage, the topic was: Time. When I read t...
Read More
No Pants Subway Ride
On Sunday January 10th I was lucky enough to be part of the No Pants Subway Ride (NPSR) event in New York City. Charlie Todd, the founder ofImprov Everywhere, started this crazy tradition 15 years ago when he decided to see how New Yorkers would react if out-of-the-blue he would start to take his pants off in the subway in the middle of winter...
Read More
Overcoming fear in 6 steps
This week I saw for the first time thevideoof the little penguin trying to jump into the water from a diving board at a Zoo. Besides being the cutest thing ever and penguins being one of my favorite creatures, it clearly demonstrated the way we all approach our fears. Who knew animals felt the same way? By facing 100 fears I learned that there...
Read More
"So Michelle, what do you do?"
Who knew this question could make me feel so many things at the same time:1.Lost:What do I do?2.Insecure: Well, I used to be an Art Director, now.. I'm unemployed3.Unapologetic:I'm unemployed because I quit my job4.Naive:to pursue my dream5.Conformist:I'm a Youtuber6.Doubtful:I guess.. I have a YouTube channel and lots of subscribers7.Humble:I f...
Read More