Thursday, July 14, 2011


By Julie Rahm

My coaching business makes me well traveled. I have wonderful experiences with a lot of different clients from all walks of life. As their Mindset Mechanic, I help them work through their challenges. One of the commonalities I see is worry.

Worry seems to be a common thread that runs through the fabric of all our personalities. It is inherent in the human species. This worry can be paralyzing. Some are unable to make decisions and move forward in their lives. The sum of their unknowns overcomes their ability to “get going”. Worry is an obstacle that can prevent people from achieving their dreams. It can stop people from taking even marginal risks that might better their lives. It is sad to witness individuals with so much potential that will not move forward because they are worried about consequences.

Dan Zadra says, “Worry is misuse of our imagination”. So, I use a simple imagination exercise to get my clients over their worry. Together we write down their major concerns. Then, we imagine the worst and all their worries happen. After they imagined all their worries came true, we discuss the “now what”. At the end of this simple exercise, my clients realize if their worries materialize, the consequences are really not that bad. They stop worrying and move forward with their lives. One client was reluctant to leave his employer and start his own business. He wouldn’t make the leap to entrepreneurship. He was worried about failure. He feared being judged if he failed and had to go back to a job. To help him through his dilemma, we discussed his fears. At the end of our session, he realized that whatever happened he could handle it. Then, he wrote detailed visions for his new thriving business and how he feels running a successful business, as if his wish was already fulfilled. Free from fear, he made the leap. Now, his new business is flourishing, reflecting his vision.

Fear is the largest component of worry. When you master your fears, worry disappears. My husband, John, is not a worrier. He doesn’t carry around a lot of fear. Yet, he is cautious. He tends to prepare for the worst and hope for the best. His time in the Marine Corps has served him well. He says being shot at provides a new perspective on fear. Really, you don’t have to be shot at to become the master of your worries. My metaphorical tools can help. When your level tilts, you are dwelling in worry. Use the flashlight to figure out why. Pluck those worries from your mind with the pliers. Use the hammer to pound in a positive vision of your wish fulfilled. Finally, the tape measures your progress toward a better mindset.

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