Pay-off: Eliminate fear, and do the right things
Investment: 2.5 mins
What are you scared of?
It’s an interesting thing, fear. We deal with it first. To attempt to survive.
The amygdala in your brain takes on that job. And what a job! Quite the responsibility. Since it leads your thinking, and leads you into the situations you find yourself in, you’d better hope it’s reliable and knows what it’s doing!
Not always. Don’t get me wrong, it’s led you to where you are pretty well on the whole. You’re surviving.
But put the champagne away. Because it also led you needlessly into countless situations that made you far worse off. It’s made you feel horrible too often too. It’s stopped you doing rewarding things. And it’s made you behave like an idiot sometimes too! It may have helped your survival, but how often has it really helped you live your life?
It’s had you run sometimes when you should have stayed.
It’s prevented you from tackling challenges and growing as you do, so that those challenges aren’t so big in future.
It’s got you to fight (which maybe came back to bite you) when perhaps you should have sought to understand someone or a situation better.
And it’s got you to panic when you should have paused, zoomed out, looked at a situation from different angles, collected more facts, created more options, and separated your thinking from that of the masses.
Amygdala’s are poor leaders. And yet we put them in charge. Lots of amygdala’s working together in the only way they know how (say, across your town, country, or entire planet – or across your office, team, or department) is massively problematic. I mean, big time.
But you could free yourself from that. You could own your thinking, and work with your amygdala. You know, support it.
Here’s some steps you could take:
1. Understand that your amygdala calls the shots, if you let it.
2. Understand that it means well but too often leads you away from the best thing to do in a situation.
3. Understand that it needs taming, and the rest of your brain can tame it, if you make the effort to do so. (It will still try to take the reigns frequently, and will succeed on occasion, but at least you’re now consciously trying to tame it and give the rest of your brain a say.)
4. Understand that learning more about the facts, the reality of a situation is one of the best ways to tame your amygdala. Notice I said ‘facts’. Not 90% of the things you read online. They’re mostly opinions and interpretations.
Tip: don’t look for facts that prove what you were just thinking. That’s lazy as hell. You have the ability to do better than that. And, by the way, looking for information that supports your original thinking hands control straight back to your amygdala. No, look for facts that disprove what you were thinking. Or at the very least those that put a crack in what you were thinking. Search to find the answer to “why might I be wrong about this?” This gives you a much better chance of doing the right thing next.
5. Tell yourself, “it is what it is.”
6. Ask yourself, “now what could, and what will I do about it to increase my chances? And not just to increase my chances of getting through this, but actually coming out the other side even stronger, even better off?”
7. Get some answers, pick the best, and act on that one.
Got a team of customer facing people who fear the idea of looking or feeling like they’re selling?
It’s probably because they’re not clear on a way to do it that is comfortable and effective. They could learn more ways that are sensible, ethical, and high-value to their customers. So it ends up looking and feeling really positive. Because it is. You can learn that here.
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