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Ron Breazeale

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Healthy Behaviors Strengthen Willpower
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Tips for Conquering Fear
By Ron Breazeale   
Rated "G" by the Author.
Last edited: Friday, February 12, 2010
Posted: Friday, February 12, 2010

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Conquering fear is about control. These suggestions may help you exert better control over your emotions and your life.

Conquering fear is about control. These suggestions may help you exert better control over your emotions and your life.

  1. Admit that you are human. Admit that you have feelings. Admit that sometimes you are afraid.
  2. Don't be afraid of your fear. Let yourself cry or shake, discharge the fear. Talk about how you feel.
  3. Don't make decisions out of fear alone. Think!
  4. Use your head. Think about how you feel. Look at the situation. What is the worst thing that could happen? What are your options?
  5. Learn to control your fear before it controls you. Learn to visualize a relaxing place to put yourself when you are afraid. Control your breathing. Breathe deeply and slowly. Learn other exercises that can help you control your body's reaction to fear. Talk with a health care professional: a psychologist, physician.
  6. Get mad. Anger will suppress the fear reaction. Channel your anger into constructive action. Think, plan as well as feel.
  7. Leave the situation if this makes sense or is possible. Escape.
  8. Visualize yourself handling the situation. Visualization can help you desensitize yourself and control your fear. Don't avoid thinking about or confronting the situation. Visualization allows you to expose yourself to the situation and to learn to control the fear before you put yourself in the situation that frightens you. Learn how you can use exposure and desensitization as a way of controlling your fear. Talk to a psychologist or counselor.
  9. Identify what you are reacting to. Is it old issues in your past you haven't dealt with? Is the threat a realistic one? Are you over-reacting to media hype?
  10. Look at what you can do to change the situation to make it less frightening. Like the Serenity Prayer says: change the things you can, accept what you cannot, know the difference.

Ron Breazeale, PH.D., is a clinical psychologist with over 30 years of experience in the fields of mental health and substance abuse. For More information, and

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