Using Fear as a Compass: 3 Steps to Being Brave Part 2 – Step 2: Thinking Brave. Catch up on Part 1.
If body awareness is important to transforming fear, then our mindset and noticing our thoughts is how we supercharge that awareness.
In Step 2, I want to help you practice having a brave mindset, which means you first need to understand the difference between your inner critic (fear-based thoughts), your intuition (messages and thoughts coming from your inner guide), and wisdom.
The inner critic thoughts are usually critical and self-sabotaging. We all have them. What are yours? As usual, I’d like to get you into action mode now, rather than over-thinking it, so grab your notebook and pen and start by writing down some of your usual inner critic messages. What are you “hearing” on a regular basis keeping you afraid, negative, or doubtful?
Think for a moment about where these messages come from.
Do you know who’s behind these old tapes running through your head? A parent, perhaps? Or a family member, coach, previous boss, or co-worker? What are the voices in your head that you’ve been listening to?
I’d like you to give one of them (maybe the strongest, most irritating one) a name. This is a game-changing tool because it helps you step away from the voice and recognize it as outside of yourself. Mine’s Martha.
So, these days when Martha starts up with her usual, “You aren’t good enough. They aren’t going to like you or be interested in what you have to say,” I can recognize her (both by how it feels in my body and because she tends to say the same thing over and over) and shut her down. “Thanks, Martha, I know you mean well, but I got this,” is how I reply to her.
When you begin to practice awareness around the voices, they start to shift and lose their power.
The next thing to understand about your mindset is you always have your intuition and inner guide on your side communicating with you. You can feel intuitional messages as a “Yes,” or a “No” in your body. The yes messages feel light, free and easy. The no messages feel tight, heavy or constrained. You have to go back to what you learned in Step 1 to get good at this. The feeling is how you’ll know.
When you’re afraid, you’re usually getting both inner critic and intuition hitting you at the same time. You’ll need to know what’s what and get good at aiming toward your intuition as your guide. When in doubt always attempt to clear your mind, and come into your body – your feelings won’t lie. But you can’t always believe what you think.
Thinking brave includes recognizing and shutting down the inner critic, and then following your intuition to choose better, healthier, more productive ways to think, believe and act.
You’ll need to begin trusting your inner guide’s voice.
In Step 3, I’ll help you with what to do beyond feeling and thinking; to take the action that makes the difference in shifting and transforming fear.
Without action, the awareness you’re practicing won’t help you make the changes you crave. This is where the real brave stuff comes in!