Mountains, Molehills, and 4-steps to Overcome FEAR

Our kitchen faucet over the last year or so had become increasingly slower. No matter the time of day nor how hard we attempted to open the tap the volume of water produced was barely a drip. Every time I turned on the tap I thought of the horrible and costly things that could be wrong.

Slow Faucet1

I dreaded the idea of the cost and effort to fix the problem, so I chose the path of least resistance. I can’t tell you how many times we’d just take a large pan and ‘fill it from the tub’. It was far easier to carry water throughout the house than to consider the cost and consequences of a real repair.

A couple of weeks ago, as I waited for the coffee carafe to fill with water, I decided I had had enough! It was time to at least see what the problem was. I began by removing the strainer at the faucet. Amazingly the problem was the strainer – it was clogged!

Within minutes, the catalyst of the problem was clear! Even better was the fact that the fix was quick, easy and very inexpensive.

But wait, there’s more!

This isn’t just a story about my faucet. It’s a reminder that often the problems we imagine are a huge mountain – We imagine thousands of dollars in costs – We imagine huge investments of time that are really molehills, minor and simple. We often imagine the mountain when we encounter a molehill.


We imagine the worst possible scenario and become paralyzed by fear.

Fear can be a great motivator and a powerful tool of survival (especially when there is possibility of a lion attack); however, fear can also become the antithesis of action. Fear allows us to take a little mole-hill and create a mountain in our minds. Dale Carnegie once said

“Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy.”

In an effort to help me ‘overcome fear and go out and get busy’ here are the 4 steps I have come up with to overcome fear:

1 – STOP THINKING START DOING – I can and oft do get so caught up in thinking about a project / problem / idea. I spend so much time and effort thinking and planning that I do not actually do anything.

2 – REDEFINE FAILURE – this is ridiculously hard for me! However, with each thing that doesn’t work you are one step closer to discovery of the thing that does work.

3 – REALIZE DOING NOTHING IS AN ACTION – by avoiding or doing nothing I am taking an action. I know it seems strange but the act of inaction is in itself an action. By taking responsibility for the action of inaction I can spur myself to being more proactive.

4 – SHIFT FOCUS – By shifting my focus to what I can gain it becomes easier to act. In the example of the faucet when I was completely focused of how much I wanted better water pressure I was spurred to action.

Choose to be fearless today!

Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win, by fearing to attempt. ~ William Shakespeare

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Be Fearless

FEAR!  We all have it. We all are forced to face our fears from time to time. Whether it the spider who confronts you in your bedroom when no one else is around or the idea that something is wrong in your body and you fear life changing news. We all from time to time must face our fears.

How do you approach your fears?

I am embarrassed to report that recently I lived with, at times, excruciating pain for over two weeks because I was afraid of the diagnosis. My mind could imagine all sorts of truly life altering problems. Fortunately, once I faced my fear, the problem was relatively minor and easily fixed with medication. For many of us, this is how we face our fears. We avoid.

Last night I spent some time on the phone with a friend who was afraid. She was afraid of being alone outside on a night with little light. She imagined wild animals and bugs, she feared falling and being unable to have help. Was this an irrational fear? Probably, but it was nevertheless it was a fear that caused her to be unable to continue with what she needed to do.

How do you overcome fear?

1. Recognize the fear

2. Decide you are going to conquer the fear

3. Focus your attention

4. Step into the fear with abandon

5. Pat yourself on the back when it’s over

6. Notice how much easier it gets

Be fearless today!


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