About two years ago I was going through a lot of emotional turmoil, had been in therapy for about eighteen months and felt totally overwhelmed.
It was a Thursday. I happened to have no patients that day but I did have a presentation that evening. I remember waking up and feeling totally out of control. I was crying and I told my husband that I was going to cancel my day, including my presentation.
I must mention that I love speaking to groups of people about health and the mind-body connection. It’s probably the part of what I do that I enjoy the most and I have very little anxiety around speaking publicly.
That day, even that seemed too much! I was going to cancel. I couldn’t face leaving the house. Nothing like this had ever happened to me!
The short version of the story is that I did leave the house, went to work and delivered my presentation. Ironically, from the feedback, it was one of the best presentations I’d done that year!
The point of this long preamble is to point out that fear is a part of our lives and that moving through it doesn’t negate the fear but that it takes courage to do so.
Humans are generally change averse. Change elicits fear so when we want to make changes in our lives like adopting new habits, it automatically elicits fear.
According to Brendon Burchard, a leading high performance expert, there are four primary fears that hold us back:
- Fear of being ruined.
We may be frightened that we’ll face ruin in some area of our lives if we become health/lose weight/become vibrantly energetic.
It may be that we’re frightened that it may ruin our relationship. This is possible of you and your partner have a connection through your habits – such as watching TV, eating junk food etc.
Becoming vibrantly healthy may ruin the way you see yourself. This may sound crazy but letting go of even long held negative perceptions about ourselves is hard and requires some grieving and ‘letting go’.
You may be frightened that becoming healthy will ruin your social life because you won’t want to stay up late, eat junk food and overindulge in alcohol.
You may be frightened that becoming healthy may ruin your finances because you may spend a lot of money on food, gym memberships or supplements.
- Fear of being rejected/or no longer being included.
This fear may assert itself if you are part of a group of people who don’t have a value on health. This could be your family, your colleagues or your friends.
When you become healthy, you may associate it with being different and no longer fitting in. The other members of the group may be intimidated by your success rather than being inspired by it and this can lead to your possible rejection.
We all fear being rejected on some level and will usually do whatever it takes to protect ourselves from this pain. Unfortunately we then end up settling for the pain of low vitality, poor health, medical expenses and anxiety about our future.
- Fear of taking responsibility.
This fear is a big one. As soon as we take responsibility for something then we associated that with being blamed if things go wrong.
Taking responsibility for your health habits can lead to you feeling guilty if you’re unable to follow through.
It’s always easier having someone or something outside ourselves to blame when things don’t work out the way we want them to.
‘You are responsible for everything that you are and everything that you are not.’ Sadhguru
We think that by avoiding responsibility we have the pleasure of blaming someone else for our woes. The problem is that the pleasure of having someone to blame is balanced by the pain of feeling tired, listless, drained and even sick.
- We fear that we are going to regret what we do.
We are fearful that after spending time, energy and money on improving our health, we may regret it.
Changing even one habit can make a big difference to how you feel.
Making changes to improve your health is like saving money. If you save money and then have a cash flow problem because of it, you’ve still go the saved money. You’ve lost nothing. If you improve you health and you want to stop doing that for some or other reason, you will still have the improved health.
In the Whole Health Habits Workshop there is a questionnaire that helps you identify which one or more of these fears you may have. Then theres a process that helps to balance that fear in a way that makes it less likely to creep in a sabotage the new health habits you try to adopt.
For more information about the Whole Health Habits Workshop, click on the link below:
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