The “Facing Fear” Guided Imagery exercise can help guide you through your fears and possibly help to overcome what may be blocking you from moving forward in some situation. Fear is an unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain, or a threat. Keep in mind that there are many different physical and emotional expressions of fear. These symptoms may include:
- Difficulty breathing
- Racing or pounding heart
- Chest pain or tightness
- Trembling or shaking
- Feeling dizzy or light-headed
- A churning stomach
- Hot or cold flashes including tingling sensations
- Feeling overwhelming anxiety or panic
- Feeling intense need to escape or run away
- Feeling “unreal” or detached from yourself
- Fear of losing control
- Feeling like you’re going to die or pass out
- Knowing that you’re overreacting, but feeling powerless to gain control
FEAR is Future Events Appearing Real or False Evidence Appearing Real.
“The things you fear the most are the things you need to face first.”
“Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less.” – Marie Curie
So what do we do when we are full of fear or scared in the moment? Stop and breathe! Just breathe. Then Ask yourself what you are afraid of. Next, gather the courage to face the fear. By facing it, you are deciding that it has no power over you. By running from it, you are giving your power away to it and it will continue to return until you do face it.
Preparation: Pen and paper or your journal to take notes.
Begin the Session: Begin by asking yourself a few questions about your fears. Take notes.
What are some of your fears?
What did you fear most when you were a child?
Do you ever remember being scared?
What were you scared of?
What do you fear right now?
What would it be like if you didn’t have this fear?
Now read the Facing Fear guided imagery visualization provided.
After the session, journal about your experience or draw the images seen during the session.
FACING FEAR • VISUALIZATION
Get into a comfortable position…
Allow your eyes to close and begin by focusing your awareness on your breath…
Breathing in and breathing out… easily and effortlessly
Remember that each breath allows you to become more and more relaxed and comfortable…
Outside sounds only allow you to go deeper inside…
Remind yourself to leave the noise and stress of the outside world…
Know that you are safe and in control of yourself…
Journey into the quiet and peaceful space of your own inner world…
Begin to imagine your fear or obstacle…
What does it look like?
It could be a giant wall keeping you from reaching your goal… or it could be a big ugly monster roaring in your face. Whatever it may be, just know that you are now safe to face it.
Notice the details of this fear and how it is blocking you from moving forward…
What words come to your mind to describe this fear?
Where do you think this fear is coming from?
What may have happened in the past that keeps you stuck in this fear?
Now take several deep breaths… Breathing in and breathing out… easily and effortlessly…
In breathing out, release all the physical and emotional tightness you may have in your body…
Now look ahead and begin to become fully aware of your goal just on the other side of this obstacle…
Look beyond this fear… This is what you would see and experience if the fear or obstacle was removed.
Who would you be? … Where would you go? … What would you do?
Know that your goal is patiently waiting for you on the other side of this obstacle.
Is there anything stopping you from moving beyond this fear or obstacle?
What would you need to do to get over this obstacle?
All you have to do is go around or go beyond it…
Maybe you have tried to overcome this fear before… if it’s a person you have to face, go up to them and tell them the truth about how you feel.
Take your time and fully be present in this moment.
Do whatever it takes to remove the obstacle…
You are in complete control …
Now, say out loud to this fear, “YOU HAVE NO POWER OVER ME.”
You now begin to see the fear become weak and powerless…
You recognize how this fear may have served you in the past…
You also recognize what this fear was trying to teach you…
You thank the fear for serving you perfectly in your effort to achieve your goal…
Now that you have faced this fear and overcome this obstacle you begin to see an opening ahead…
As you start to move forward you begin to imagine that you are on your way to your destination… you begin to experience the magnificence of having achieved your goal.
Notice all of the things around you now…
What do you see now?
How do you feel now?
In a moment, when you open your eyes, you will easily recall and remember everything about your journey…
Three, coming back to the present time… Two, stretching your body…One, eyes open, refreshed and alert…
What do you know now that you didn’t know when we began this session?
What was the most significant part of this experience?
What will you do now that you have overcome this fear?
When will you do it?
When using this exercise with your client: Ask your client the same questions, go through the guided imagery exercise, and at the conclusion ask your client what action they are willing to take to create the outcome they want and overcome their fear. Write it down.
Focus the session: Focus the coaching session around the experience. Take notes. Describe how you felt during the journey.
Create an action plan: What can you begin to do now to face your fear?
Close the Session: Thank your client. Acknowledge them for being so open and willing to look at these areas of their life with you. Use the 1-10 scale. Schedule a follow up session.