I have learned that we can overcome our bouts of depression, guilt and anger by finally recognizing the source of our feelings and gaining control over life’s outcomes.
Most of us want to rid ourselves of pain and frustration and experience peace of mind, love and fulfillment. At the same time, we want to control and be able to predict future events and maintain our old self-concepts. In other words, we want to do the same things over and over but expect different results.
Some say that is the sign of insanity or stupidity, however to most people life is a series of loops, twists and turns much like a roller coaster.
Fear works to victimize us and to immobilize us from taking action in our lives. Fear pushes us into a never-ending repetitive cycle of contemplation, procrastination, and eliminates any possibility for fulfillment, love, happiness, security, success and purpose.
Our mind constantly replays all of our memories like a video. Included are tons of obsolete guilt and fears, which squeeze out the joy of the present.
A fear-based mind will convince you to blame everything around you as a way of not taking full responsibility for your life.
Fear is the root of all that is broken in our lives. For thousands of years establishments have used fear to control the masses. Fear causes separation between us. Fear causes us to become dishonest with ourselves when we try to live up to standards put in place by doctrine for example.
In the case of Tim, my recent Rant & Grow podcast guest, he lost his mother when he was just 18. A few years later he married his wife who took on the role of the rock in his life. That was the role of his mother before she passed away just a few years before he got married. In essence Tim looked to his wife as his new source of fulfillment and stability.
That is a lot of pressure on an individual. Tim’s wife was put in a position to take on having to fulfill his needs. It’s not fair to put those expectations on another person.
Many years later they had a child, his wife shifted her focus from Tim to their son. That is totally normal, but Tim ends up experiencing another form of loss. His behaviors reflect those of someone who has not learned self-awareness yet and hasn’t learned healthy ways to cope with pain yet. Fast forward, Tim loses his dad, and recently he fears losing his job.
His relationship with his wife has been tumultuous, they are on the brink of divorce. He blames her for their issues, yet he has never fully shown up into the relationship complete as a man, as a husband. He has shown up needy from day one. No wonder she is resentful towards him.
The point of the coaching session wasn’t to judge Tim, it was to help Tim wake up. Tim has lived with the fear of loss for two decades. He never healed the wound of losing his mother. The repeating patterns of fear of loss, and in some cases actual loss have caused behaviors that are less than stellar for a grown man, for a husband and a father.
The cycles of fear can often be overridden with some good brain hacking techniques (aka mantras), and with a shift in focus towards being in action. For example, having goals with clear action steps, and associated timelines is a solid way to get someone unstuck, and manifesting a better reality for themselves.
However, there are times when that isn’t enough. There are times when therapy is needed. A life coach can help uncover blockages, identify steps to move forward powerfully, help develop healthy life habits, hold you accountable toward your goals, but we are not therapists.
Sometimes you have to refer someone to a psychologist who uses different tools and techniques to help an individual heal from wounds that manifest in repetitive negative behaviors.
In the case of Tim, that is what I ended up recommending at the end of the coaching session. His session can be revealing if you find yourself repeating certain behavioral patterns, especially when it comes to relationships.
Fear will not serve you in building a great relationship with a partner, employees, friends, and above all with yourself. Seeing a therapist, isn’t a sign of weakness, it is a sign of maturity.
We are not supposed to have everything figured out; we are supposed to learn to be honest with ourselves and be authentic.
The first step to removing fear from your life requires self-honesty. The second step is self-awareness, and this does not happen on its own… you have to ask for help.
You can get help reading personal development books, speaking to coaches, mentors, a spiritual guide, and in some cases a therapist. Nonetheless it isn’t having fears that is a sign of weakness, not asking for help is the weakness.
“Ask for the rope to get out of the hole you might be in, but don’t forget that it’s your job to put in the effort to pull yourself out.”
Originally published at tulliosiragusa.com.
Tullio Siragusa is an expert level Certified Life Coach, a pioneer of disruptive technologies, an emotional intelligence (EQ) thought leader, futurist, speaker, and author. For the past 30 years, Tullio has built world class leadership teams in technology companies and startups. Tullio currently serves as Chief Strategy Officer at Nearsoft, he co-produces and hosts DojoLIVE! a platform that gives voice to emerging technology luminaries. He also hosts Rant & Grow, an entertaining and heart-centered reality podcast where each episode explores people’s personal blockages and how to powerfully move forward with careers, relationships, and self-realization by developing healthy habits. As a founding member of Radical, a social justice movement, Tullio is a strong supporter of human-dignity in all aspects of life, including freedom in the workplace.
Image courtesy of Annie Spratt.