Fear can hold you back from so much, like asking for a raise, quitting your job to find your passion, traveling solo and the list goes on. If you’re letting yourself overanalyze everything you’re afraid of or think you may not be great at, you could be holding yourself back from discovering what you truly love to do. We stumbled upon some awesome advice that suggests getting over most of the scary things in life can be done without doing much — if any — thinking at all. Seriously.



Neil Pasricha, author of The Happiness Equation, recently shared the magic in thinking backwards. He says that most people follow a process that calls for evaluating if they CAN do something before deciding if they WANT to do it… before ever actually giving it a go. Neil suggests that simply rearranging the order in which you think about the words can make a world of difference. Using swimming as his personal example, Neil wrote, “I never got to doit, because I never thought I could do it, and so I didn’t want to do it.”



How can you switch up your thinking and overcome your fears? Stop considering your fears (or assumptions that you CAN’T do something) before deciding whether or not to try getting over them. Force yourself to jump right in. “Place action in front of capability and motivation. Put it before can do it and want to do it. Turns out, it’s easier to act yourself into a new way of thinking than it is to think yourself into a new way of acting.” He further explained, “Those forced baby steps create the early belief in your abilities, which create the motivation — and a virtuous cycle quickly develops.” Whoa, that actually makes a lot of sense.

So whether you’re afraid of heights, presenting at the next company meeting or trying something new, Neil says, “Go forward. Step into your fears. Because you’ll quickly see that, completely counter-intuitively, motivation does not actually cause action. Action causes motivation.” For Neil, that meant signing up for swimming lessons at the local city pool and jumping in. It might be scary to dive-in head first, but a few frightening moments are definitely better than years of dread or missing out on amazing experiences.

What’s your biggest fear? Will you take Neil’s advice to conquer and overcome it? Join the convo on Twitter @BritandCo!

(Photos via Getty, h/t Motto by Time)