Fear to Faith
In every moment you have a choice: Faith or Fear. Choose wisely.
Right after 9/11, I developed a debilitating fear of flying. It got so bad that I would refuse to board my flight if I felt the TSA officer had been anything less than completely thorough when examining my passport. I purposely would choose a seat in the very last row of the aircraft and wait until the last possible second to board. This would ensure that I could look at every person who I would be flying with before I'd decide whether to sit down or to disembark. It was pretty awful.
The worst part of it was, I absolutely loved to travel. And I knew that if I didn’t find a way to conquer my fear, I would be giving up something that brought me so much joy.
So, I developed a tool for myself that I still use 17 years later. My “Fear to Faith translator.”
When I feel afraid, I name the thing(s) I am afraid of in a “Fear Statement” and then I translate it into a “Faith Statement.”
Here are a few examples from my fear-of-flying days:
I am afraid that this plane is going to crash. ———>
I have faith in my pilots. I have faith their years and years of training and experience.
I am afraid that I won’t get to my destination alive. ———>
I have faith that I have more work to do in this life and that my future is bright..
I am afraid that someone on this plane wants me dead. ———>
I have faith in the humanity of the people on this flight. I have faith that everyone flying with me is a good person with a whole life ahead of them too.
You get the picture.
It worked. I overcame my fear of flying and then started applying my Fear to Faith translator anywhere I could in my acting career.
I am afraid that I am going to crack on the high note. ———>
I have faith in my vocal technique.
I am afraid I’m going to forget my lines. ———>
I have faith in my ability to memorize. I have faith in my ability to improvise.
I am afraid that my agent is going to drop me. ———>
I have faith that my agent and I have a healthy and open dialogue about our future.
It kept working. As I moved away from my acting career and into my current role(s), I had lots of fears to combat.
I am afraid that I won’t have anything interesting to add to this conversation. ———>
I have faith in my ability to contribute. I have faith in my ability to listen.
I am afraid that I’m not worth the price the client is paying me. ———>
I have faith that the value I’m providing to the client is worth even more than what they are paying me.
Now I am in my mid 40’s and…
Try it. What are you afraid of?