15 strategies to find courage in the face of life’s challenges
There is a saying that life is what happens while you are busy planning. While you can try to be prepared for any eventuality, setbacks will happen no matter how hard you prepare. We’ve all been in a situation where some obstacle or event has left us intimidated or even scared. It is important to see these moments not as an invitation to give up but rather as a chance to prove our courage.
To help you get through stressful situations, less than 15 members of Forbes Coaching Council share their tips on how to persevere when you’re feeling overwhelmed or uncertain.
1. Think of someone less fortunate.
Remember that what you are experiencing is relative in nature. Think about others who face even bigger obstacles than you. Be thankful that your challenges are not so intense. Then take a deep breath, make a plan of action, and prepare for the best and worst-case scenarios. Being in the game is half the battle. – Karan rhodes, Incredibly different leadership
2. Reframe your fear.
Neuroscience says that the more we think about something, the more it grows. Acknowledge your fears and feeling overwhelmed and ask yourself, “What’s another perspective? Are my assumptions really true? Could the challenges be reframed into opportunities? »Break things down into bite-sized pieces. Focus on one thing you can control, then the next. It’s okay to be afraid sometimes, so be lenient with yourself. – Susan sadler, Sadler Communications LLC
3. Engage in self-talk.
When fear arises, we often react too quickly, but living it or pushing it away only feeds it more. Connect to the truth of fear. What scares you is what you are going through inside, not outwardly. Go inside. Talk to that part of yourself that is trying to tell you something and go beyond its irrationality to find the wisdom behind the fear. Then courage will emerge. – Lin Tan, Institute for Collective Change Pte Ltd.
4. Let go of what you fear losing.
Someone like Deepak Chopra would tell us to practice ‘detaching’ from results, but I think Yoda put it better when he insisted that we have to practice ‘letting go of whatever you fear losing. “. The fear of losing these things is usually strong enough to keep us from accepting the loss. If we can imagine a life “without the thing”, we can proceed with courage (and be “detached” from the result). – Jeff Klubeck, Get A Klu, Inc.
5. Break down the action steps.
Often times when we feel fear, our brains make up worst-case scenarios, which can keep us stuck. Check the reality of the obstacle by writing down the facts. Meeting or taking up the challenge is a series of steps, not a giant leap. Write down the steps of what it will take to overcome this and do the first thing on the list, then the next thing. Before you know it, you’ve taken on the challenge head-on. – Frances mcintosh, Intentional Coaching LLC
6. Go to the roar.
Gazelles are much faster than lions. Lions chase gazelles by chasing young lions towards old lions who are hiding. When gazelles are close to old lions, the lions rise up and roar. The gazelles are frightened and run towards the young lions, which can now kill them. If they had run towards the roar, they would have escaped. Fear kills them. Go to the roar. – Jeff Altman, The big game hunter
7. Understand the motivation behind your emotions.
Uncertainty, fear and lack of clarity often generate negative emotions and beliefs. When triggered, it can be detrimental. Becoming curious and investigating our emotions fuels our self-awareness. Once the distortion or limiting belief is identified, we are then able to open and align our beliefs and strengths to break out of resistance and move on to productivity and achievement. – Lori Harris, Harris Whitesell Consulting
8. Accept what you cannot control.
If you are looking for courage, you will not find it. However, if you are focusing on accepting what you cannot control and focusing your energy on what you can control, you have made the important decision not to be a victim. Spend time on what you can influence. Keep a determined attitude. Only then can the impetus for progress calm fears and allow courage to find you. – Jim vaselopulos, Rafti Consultants, LLC
9. Harness your inner worth and unique abilities.
Fear is normal. It is usually a response to the loss of something or an unpleasant situation. But in reality, everything that is exterior remains exterior. It is the inner value – which we continue to hold and which remains unchanged – that counts. Remember your abilities and your uniqueness as an individual. Are they still present? If they are, there is less to fear. – Chuen Chuen Yeo, ACESENCE
10. Build on your past experience.
Think back to a time when you felt strong and capable, remember it as clearly as you can. Start with the environment around you. Where have you been? What was the mood? The clearer the image becomes in your mind, the more feelings will come back as well. Remember how you felt and draw strength from it for your current situation. You are that strong and capable person even now! – Rajeev shroff, Cupela Consulting
11. Visualize the result.
When I need courage and inspiration, I first visualize the end: “At the end of this journey, how will this cause or this group be better or different because I participated? Visualization is motivating. Then I map out the support system of people and groups that I can activate to help me achieve the goal. Fear is crushed with others by your side. You don’t have to do it all alone. – Wendy fraser, Fraser Consulting, LLC
12. Expect greatness even in times of fear.
Whatever you throw, you get it back. Your immediate world is a direct reflection of you. Everything you perceive outside of yourself is a mirror image, an internal reflection of something within you. If you are afraid you will find something to fear. If you love, you will see love everywhere. What you experience outside of yourself is a projection of your expectations. Train to expect greatness. – Pasha Carter, The VIP network
13. Reach out to those you trust.
We are a social species. Even in times of social distancing, the opportunities to reach out and connect remain. Fear and the unknown can be crippling. Paralysis will do nothing to help you cope with your situation. Reach out to a colleague or other trusted person and speak through your fear or / the stranger. Then take one step forward, then another. What was previously out of your control, you are now in control. – David Yudis, Potential selves
14. Take a break and remember to breathe.
In times of panic and fear, we operate in survival mode, triggering our fight, flight, or freeze response. Our breathing contracts, our hearts race, and our thinking can become foggy. By pausing for a while and taking three to five deep breaths, we get more oxygen to our brain and can start to relax and think more clearly. We can get out of survival mode and into a productive and more efficient state. – Daphna horowitz, Daphna Horowitz Director
15. Put things in perspective.
One of the main things I learned from training with Navy Seals is that in order to overcome challenges, you have to create perspective. They have a mantra that says, “Things can always be worse. It reminds them that it’s not as bad as they think it is. When life hits you hard, you need to remember that someone in the world is worse than you and overcomes the challenge. So why not you ? – Raul Villacis, The next level experience