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How to overcome fear

Bob Mayer, author of “Who Dares Wins: Special Operations Tactics for Success,” offered a workshop at the Pacific Northwest Writers Association conference last week.

Mayer, in addition to writing fiction and nonfiction books, provides teambuilding exercises for business and organizations based on techniques he learned as a member of Special Operations Forces.

While most of his presentation was geared to writers, he did talk about how fear keeps people from reaching their goals.

I bought his book at the autograph party to see what techniques he had to offer on overcoming fear.

Fear is the No. 1 enemy and the No. 1 cause of goal conflict, Mayer says.

Personal goals are often tied to fear. For example, employees may be so worried about being laid off that they have difficulty concentrating on their jobs.

Mayer offers these steps to overcome fear:

  • Acknowledge that fear is a reality. It will have less effect the more it is recognized.
  • Prepare for fear. Train yourself to overcome it. One way to do this is to perform under pressure. If you’re an introvert, talk to someone you don’t know every day. You can also select an activity that’s positive, but is something that you normally don’t like to do.
  • Face your fear and take action.

“The things that we fear to do are often the things that keep us from being successful,” Mayer says in his book. “The successful person has fear, but acts towards their desired goals in spite of it.”

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