Fear is one of the strongest emotions we feel as humans. It’s also one of the most stifling, holding us back from reaching for our dreams and stopping us from achieving our full potential.
In fact, fear affects us far more than we may imagine. We may associate it with phobias and stressful situations, but in reality, it’s the subtle fears that often go unnoticed that tend to harm us the most.
Here are three signs your fears are holding you back and preventing you living in the present:
You’re scared of getting hurt
Whether you were picked on by playground bullies, a parent has let you down or your partner was unfaithful, you may find yourself judging people you meet in the present based on crimes committed by people from your past.
Fear may stop you from speaking your mind, trusting your relatives or falling in love.
Keeping your guard up may seem like a great way to protect yourself, but in reality, this approach will stop you living your life to the full and prevent you from properly enjoying relationships with others.
You’re scared of failure
We often let a fear of failure prevent us from reaching for our goals. Whether you want to learn a new skill, change your career or adopt a healthy new lifestyle, there are plenty of times in life where we may let fear hold us back.
Fear of failure is perfectly natural, but if you don’t try, you’ll never really know what you’re capable of. Besides, to some extent, failure is unavoidable. It shapes us into the people we’re meant to be and throws us in the right direction.
You’re scared of things outside of your control
If you spend your life worrying about things that are completely out of your control, you’re wasting your time and draining yourself of valuable energies that could be focussed elsewhere.
It’s only natural to worry about illnesses, death and disaster but for the most part, these things are out of our control. Worrying about outside forces is not only unproductive, but it robs us of happiness and peace.
Once you learn to identify the times when you’re being fearful, you can teach yourself to better handle your anxieties. By learning to tell the difference between productive fears (those that prevent us from putting ourselves in danger) and unproductive fears (those that hold us back), you can gain greater control over your own life.