How to Turn Fears into Workable Challenges

· January 27, 2016

Fear is a fundamental emotion to which all our other emotions are related. It generates both internal and external discomfort and creates barriers that block us from developing to our full potential and completely enjoying life.

One of the first feelings we experience as a child is fear. It is typical to feel fear in the face of situations and people that seem to require us to change something within ourselves.

We may encounter many different types of fear. For example, there is the fear of being alone, or of going through life without a companion who allows us to feel at peace; there is the fear of not being able to make friends, fear of loss, and fear of not achieving the goals we set out for ourselves.

When we fail to understand or properly manage our fear it can paralyze us, and bury within us our hidden and great personal potential. It is necessary for us to recognize that potential in order to feel good about ourselves, share our emotions with the world, and, most importantly, be able to leave behind that which you want to give to others.

Can we resist fear and turn it into a challenge? 

Not everything is “scary.” There is a big secret here, and a big question: Can we resist fear and actually take advantage of it? Absolutely. In this article you will find some tips and guidelines to learn how to conquer fear and use it to your advantage.

Recognize your fears. 

In order to be able to start thinking of fears as challenges, the first step is to perform an exercise in self-awareness. It is essential to be sincere with ourselves and able to recognize the fears we feel.

When we gain this awareness, we allow ourselves to get to know our situation and are able to use the tools that are required for it

Don’t worry if these fears are unique, or if you don’t know of anyone who shares them or has experienced similar feelings. What is important is that they are affecting you and who you are. This makes it something worthy of addressing, solving, and changing for your own personal wellbeing.


Start by recognizing, identifying, and cataloguing the fears you feel and experience in your life. Many of them are probably normal, common fears for many people. Take for example certain common phobias, like fear of snakes, spiders, or public speaking.

First, catalogue your fears according to their degree of importance in your day to day life. This will allow you to see which fears do not require your immediate attention, and you can focus on those which matter more to you and/or that truly hinder you from making progress in your life.

Ask the right questions so you can get the right answers.

When you set out to transform fear into a personal challenge, one of the most typical questions within this task that you must avoid is: “Why am I afraid?”

If you want to answer yourself in a positive way and truly allow yourself to learn how to move past your fear, it is essential to ask yourself the question: “What do I get by being afraid?” Surely some answers will come to you such as: avoiding reaching my goals, not creating new objectives, and blocking me from feeling good and being happy. 

When you have completed the difficult step of recognizing your fears, you should then recognize your own goals and dreams. This step will allow you to avoid making your overwhelming fear the focus of your doubts.

If you give up something you want because of fear, it is much more productive to think of the personal success you will achieve if you carry out that action.

Learn how to set goals for yourself. 

When you have already arrived at this level and have overcome your fear, or rather “the fear of your fear,” it is necessary consider your personal goals and dreams. It is important that the objectives you decide on are realistic and correspond to your current personal situation. 

A great exercise to help you in that process is to identify and evaluate your skills and abilities before actually creating your personal challenges. Many times, fears are based on assumed internal shortcomings that each and every person has. Therefore, it isn’t good to set out an impossible challenge for yourself, as it will only hurt your self-esteem.

If you want to be aware of your potential and that you are more than able to achieve what you want to achieve, try making a list of your past successes. This exercise will allow you to remember and be conscious of what an amazing person you are, to love yourself and to care for yourself again, to reward yourself, and, most importantly, to let you start crossing things off that long list of goals that you discover you could achieve. This will help build a feeling of gradual but consistent success, which will help to control your fear while you continue reaching your desired objectives.

Learn to reward yourself. 

When you have defeated the challenge you set out to overcome, it does not mean you should stop there. It simply means that you have reached your goal, while reducing your fear and learning how to control it; this helps you stay motivated to keep moving forward, and helps prevent us from stalling and standing still.

It is so important to not hold back once you achieve one of your goals. If you let time pass, you may run the risk future failures becoming an excuse to not do something, an excuse to say that you aren’t worth anything and that you’ve changed for the worse. Hesitation and stagnation may cause you to devalue the learning you have achieved, and the positive parts of your personality.

Learn how to act in the face of failure. 

It is okay. The trick is to regulate your own failure and tell yourself that it is okay, but also not talking to yourself negatively or punishing yourself for your failure as if it were something truly horrible.

A good tool is learning to process the way in which you evaluate yourself and talk to yourself in a those moments in a positive and balanced way, given that that will allow you to keep your fears in check and stop focusing on your own personal limitations.

Grab a paper and pen, and put yourself to work writing down your next personal triumph, your next big goal, your favorite personal dream. Share with us how you are going to feel and if these guidelines given in this article work for you. Undoubtedly, you will reach the stars!