Fear is the underlying driver in everything you do in life. It’s both your emotional brake and accelerator.
Mastering it — which is not the same as denying it— is a key to your success in life.
Take snakes for example:
excerpted from CNN.com:
“…Albert Bandura is one of the great psychologists: Only Freud, Skinner and Piaget have been cited more. Bandura is 86 now and he still works at Stanford.
One day we (Prof. David Kelly) met on campus and got to talking about this methodology he’d developed to cure phobias, called “guided mastery.” I mean, Bandura’s methodology didn’t just cure people with a lifelong fear of snakes; it affected other parts of their lives.
First Bandura would invite the person with the fear of snakes into a room and say, “You know, there’s a snake in the next room and we’re going in there.” To which they usually responded, “Hell no, I’m not.”
Then he’d have the person stand in front of a two-way mirror looking into the room where a friend of theirs was holding a snake. Gradually, the person would start to feel more comfortable. Many small steps later, eventually they wouldn’t just be in standing in the same room as a snake, they’d be wearing leather gloves, getting ready to actually touch one. And as soon as someone with a phobia of snakes actually touched a snake in that room, they were fine. Better than fine.
In fact, the people who had touched the snake ended up having less anxiety and more success elsewhere in their lives. They tried harder, they persevered longer, and they were more resilient in the face of failure. They had gained a new confidence in their ability to attain what they set out to do. Bandura calls that confidence “self-efficacy,” and it could possibly change the world, one person at a time….”
The point: Working through whatever fears you have, gradually, patiently, systematically, frees you up on many fronts in your life and career.