Fear is a common human emotion.
To take it a step further, it might actually be more true to call it a base instinct.
Humans feel fear for a variety of different reasons—but mostly, they feel fear when they become aware that they might be in some kind of danger.
The danger could be physical, social, emotional, etc.
But long story short, we tend to feel fear when we become aware of the possibility that we may be at risk of falling prey to some sort of harm.
But here’s the thing.
Chronic fear can be needlessly crippling.
It can cause a lot of anxiety, and it can have a fairly massive negative impact on our health and well-being.
So here’s the big question:
How can you handle your fear in a healthy way so that it doesn’t compromise your emotional state or your health and wellness in general, while still allowing it to do its job in protecting you as an instinct that warns you of potential danger?
Well, as it turns out, there are a few different answers for this.
However, the greatest tool for managing your fear while still allowing it to perform its vital evolutionary function is to utilize self-awareness to dissect situations and come up with a plan for dealing with them.
See, one problem with fear is that sometimes it gets triggered in situations that aren’t actually dangerous.
Or, sometimes even more commonly, we tend to feel more fear about certain situations than those situations actually warrant.
If you’re out walking your dog at night, and suddenly get attacked by a wild bear—well, you’re probably going to instantly feel afraid, and for good reason.
This large carnivorous animal poses a very real potential threat to your safety and survival.
However, if you’re out walking your dog and you hear a noise across the street that sounds like rustling leaves—well, the truth is that you may feel almost as much fear as you would have had you seen a bear—if you allow your imagination to run wild and believe that there’s a bear on the other side of that noise.
Of course, the difference here is that there may not be a bear.
The rustling of the leaves may be a squirrel, the wind, or another person—or, there’s a small, but still very real possibility that it could, in fact, be the bear that you’re afraid of.
So here’s the thing.
When confronted with a situation that inspires a bit of fear inside of you, it’s always a good idea to try to assess the situation from a calm and rational standpoint.
Fear is a natural emotion—and getting rid of it isn’t the goal.
The goal is to let fear do its part to help us—but then not to let our reaction to it undermine our ability to function in a rational manner.
We also don’t want to walk around being so afraid in our life that it undermines our happiness, health, and wellness.
If we walk around feeling fear about things that aren’t actually dangerous to us all the time, we’re probably going to be dealing with some pretty severe anxiety.
And of course, this isn’t an ideal thing to have to deal with.
At the end of the day, this one small trick can really help to offset some of that fear you may be feeling about certain situations in your life.
Just think to yourself:
Is there actually any real evidence that I should be afraid in this situation? Or am I feeling fear because of a ‘what-if’ hypothetical?
If you realize that your fear is more based on anxiety than actual evidence, you may owe yourself a deep breath and a moment of calmness.
Remember that not every situation is going to go horribly wrong.
Sometimes, things actually go pretty well—even better than we expect.
In other words, try not to sweat the small stuff—and try not to let fear become your master in your life.