On the Other Side of Fear
As a behavioral and performance specialist, I make it a point to study and observe those who I consider to be at the top of their game — especially those who rose from meager beginnings. I have studied entrepreneurs, investors, athletes, actors, parents and more. One person that I have spent a lot of time observing and listening to is Will Smith. Because I experienced my teen years during the 1980s, my first memory of Will Smith is as the Fresh Prince alongside D.J. Jazzy Jeff. So, you can say that I have had the pleasure of observing Will evolve into the icon “living” (pun intended) that he has become.
One thing I once heard Will say is that he believes God placed everything in this life worth having on the other side of fear, and I agree with him. I would take it one step further. I believe that God placed every worthy experience and accomplishment on the other side of fear, pain, disappointment, frustration, delay, and every dark thing that tends to paralyze people. This paralyzed state is one of the leading causes of procrastination. If you want to experience all that life has for you, you must be willing to endure the process that always precedes the promise.
Get Outside of Your Comfort Zone
We live in a society that places great emphasis on comfort. People don’t like change, because change is uncomfortable; however, change is an absolute requisite for growth. We tend to go out of our way to circumvent the difficulty and struggle that is part of the process of growth that leads to greatness. The truth is that you will not begin to experience the extraordinary and phenomenal things that life has in store for you until your back is against the wall and you are forced to fight forward.
Look around you, and you will see a culture that is built to retreat at the first sign of trouble. People shun any sign of challenge and resistance. What is funny to me is the fact that no matter how much you attempt to avoid pain, struggle, difficulty, and problems, they inevitably find you. You cannot circumvent the vicissitudes of life; they will eventually stroll into your paradise. What you can do is be prepared for them. What you can do is engage them head-on. What you can do is develop a mindset of no surrender, no retreat.
You see, character and integrity cannot be developed within the confines of comfort. The development of character requires resistance and challenge. It requires that your back be pushed up against the wall. If you never develop character and integrity, you will never push through the difficult moments to experience the awesomeness on the other side of fear and pain.
Let those hard times motivate you to push harder, fight harder, and stand firmer. Make up in your mind that you will not bow down to the challenge in front of you. Become committed to your vision and dreams. You can dream all you want to, and you will never see those dreams realized until you become fully committed to them. When you are fully committed to your vision, you will not be deterred by hardships, delays, disappointment, frustration. When you become committed to your vision, you will only be satisfied by the sweet taste of victory and accomplishment. Your commitment will cause you to lose your tolerance for excuses and substandard performances.
Become a Part of the One Percent that Win Consistently
With over seven billion people on this planet, it is estimated that the vast amount of wealth and power is controlled by the top one percent. This reality can be observed on a micro-level in almost any social setting. So, what is it about this one percent that makes them so unique? Were they born with something that everyone else was not? No. It is simple. The one percent of highly successful people in this world are simply willing to do the things that the other 99 percent of the people are not willing to do.
It is incredible that 99 percent of the people in this world absolutely refuse to do what it takes to fulfill their dreams. Let’s be clear about this. Your dreams assigned to you. The responsibility of bringing your vision and dreams to fruition is yours and yours alone. Yes, you will connect with people who play integral roles in your success, but their input will be in response to your own commitment to your goals.
It is not until you commit and take action that providence moves on your behalf. It is not until you accept the challenge of stepping out of your comfort zone that the universe begins to conspire with you to bring your dreams into the realm of reality.
Guard Your Circle
You are the average of the five to 10 people you spend the most time around. You will see this reflected in the amount of money you earn, the social arena you reside in, your lifestyle, and your relationships. I had an 11th grade English teacher who took an interest in me when I was a freshman. She, along with my coaches and journalism teacher, followed me throughout the entire time I was in high school. Any time that this teacher saw me hanging around a kid she thought was not a good influence, she would call me over and say, “son, be careful who you share your space with; association brings about assimilation.” What she was saying is that the more time you spend around someone, the more they impact your thinking and behavior.
Additionally, if you are around people who are negative, their negativity will impact your energy and the force in which you engage the challenges of life. You need to carefully select the people who you allow to perpetually exist in your periphery.
Those who know me will tell you that one of the quickest ways to get ejected from my circle is by using the phrase, “be realistic.” To tell someone to be realistic is a subtle way of urging them to throttle back on their desires and goals. It is a very imperceptible way of telling a person that they are reaching too far outside of the range of their capacity. The problem is that the only limitations that you have are the ones you accept in your mind. When I hear a person say be realistic, it means they are attempting to impose their limiting beliefs on me, and that is simply unacceptable.
Find like-minded people who are headed in the same direction as you. Find people who will encourage you while holding you accountable. You don’t want a “yes” person in your camp that will back you blindly. You want someone who believes in you who will challenge you and never use fear tactics to talk you in off of the ledge of phenomenal accomplishments.
Anything in this life worth having will be resting on the other side of fear. You can have anything that you set your mind to have. The very fact that you can conceive it in your mind is God’s evidence to you that it is possible. However, it will not come easy. It will not surrender to passive demands. Life will pay whatever price you demand of it, but your demands must be clear, certain, and unwavering. Additionally, your demands must be accompanied with unyielding action. You have to push inexorably through all of the resistance until you achieve the desired goal. Quitting is not an option for winners.
Execute discipline in your life. There are things that you will have to do to win. These are the things that most people are not doing. You have to be disciplined enough to do what needs to be done — even when you don’t feel like it. Some of the greatest accomplishments are realized in the moments following activity that extends beyond the feelings and emotions of the moment.
Stop focusing on the negative things that are surrounding you. The more you focus on something, the more power you give it. What you focus on is what you will feel and experience in your life. Focus on your target. Focus on your destiny, your goals, and your aspirations. Don’t worry about what you don’t have, but zero in on what you do have and work your way out to obtain all that is necessary. Remember, “process” always precedes “promise.” There can be no obtainment of the promise of your potential without there first being an endurance of the process that leads to its fulfillment. ~ Rick Wallace, Ph.D., Psy.D.
To learn more about living life on the other side of fear, check out Dr. Wallace latest book, Critical Mass: The Phenomenon of Next-Level Living!