The Amazing Power of Fear and How To Overcome It

Confidence is Overrated. Courage is More Important

woman in darkness
Photo by Melanie Wasser on Unsplash

More scared than the Tin Man approaching the Wizard, I asked a smart and sophisticated black woman for a kiss. She served up her answer as straight as a glass of vodka, neat.

“I don’t want to kiss you,” she said, with no fucks given.

For the record, I’m a black guy who’s never kissed a sista’ before. A friend of mine referred to her as “a prized woman.” Shit, I couldn’t be mad at her.

The sun didn’t fall out of the sky. My daughter didn’t block me on her phone. And I’m still a self-made sex symbol.

In other words, being told ‘no’ ain’t that damn serious. I’ll live.

In recent weeks, I’ve been amazed at how strong of a grip that fear has over us. I’m not talking about fear of dying or fear of a monster.

I’m talking about the fear of going after something that we want.

We act as if Jason Vorhees is chasing us. We avoid taking on challenges.

I’ve long been the ringleader of being scared as shit. Scared of trying to do intimidating crap that matters to me.

Enough of that weak B.S. This mindset has been modified to battle that monster known as fear.

We need to stop assuming that we have to be confident before we try to do something that matters to us.

I read somewhere that confidence is overrated and courage is far more important. That’s because courage will allow us to attempt to do intimidating shit regardless of how we feel about it.

Writer/blogger Ruth Soukup wrote a brilliant book entitled, Do it Scared and to me, that phrase packs more horsepower than a freakin’ Ferrari.

My interpretation? Do stuff that freaks us out with zero regard to how uncomfortable we might feel.

I would’ve been fired up like a summertime grill to have that book when I was desperate for a date with a hottie or wanting to start a company.

Even though I admit that for some of us, it will take some getting used to adopting that mindset, let alone putting it into practice.

Doing something while being scared is a kick ass way to elevate our mental toughness.

It’s also a hell of a lot better than not trying shit that could be life changing. Popular author/blogger Seth Godin reminds himself before attempting something creative that “this might not work.”

There’s something so liberating about being that brutally honest with ourselves.

For decades, I’ve been terrified to approach slim, attractive women for a date or hot, disgusting sex.

I look back on those situations with more embarrassment than Clinton had when he confessed to the whole damn planet.

Fear stopped me. Being scared stopped me.

The fear was based on me believing that I wasn’t good enough for women of that visual quality.

What I couldn’t have known then was that I should’ve tried to get them and let the chips fall where they might.

I underestimated myself and overestimated them. Let’s never do that. Ever.

Hearing no or being rejected is okay. None of that is an indictment on the person who put in the effort by overcoming their fear.

That’s my recommendation. Always do it afraid because rejection is nothing.

Our lives won’t change if we don’t get something that we didn’t have in the first damn place.

It reminds me of the time I took the insurance exam for the first time. I was so out of my element and terrified. I had close to zero belief in myself that I would pass it.

As it turned out, I did fail. And I failed another couple times before passing on the fourth try. Each time, I did it while terrified.

And by hanging in there, I got what I wanted.

That shit would’ve never happened without trying.

Let’s all live by that philosophy. Starting now.

Personal Development Writer | Deante Unlimited podcast, Host | Deante: Under Construction web series, Star | Deante Young Enterprises, Chief Creative Architect

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