Tag Archives: fear


Are You Facing Your Fears?

Fear often interferes with our ability to live more fulfilling lives. Fear is the critical voice in our head, telling us we’ll never succeed. When we let fear rule our lives, we miss out on opportunities and situations that could help us reach our goals. Fear comes in different guises and forms – procrastination for example. Here are ten ways to reduce and break through fear.

1. Write down your fears and how they affect your life.

2. Are there things you’re holding back on…

…because you’re frightened that you are not good enough or of making changes generally. You have a limited time on this earth. Deadlines are called deadlines for a reason!

3. Listen to your self-talk.

Many of us don’t so much talk to ourselves as make statements – i.e. I’ll never get that job – this cuts your brain dead and gives it nothing to work on. It’s gone on a prolonged holiday!

4. Start asking yourself questions.

For example, ask yourself: how can I make giving this speech an enjoyable experience. Now your brain has something to do! Don’t expect the answer straight away (but be aware of opportunities and situations that provide clues). Get into the habit of asking yourself questions, rather than making blanket (negative) statements.

5. Redefine mistakes and learn from them.

Don’t beat yourself up over mistakes you’ve made in the past and being fearful of starting new relationships, jobs, etc. Call a mistake an opportunity for learning and seek the learning in every mistake.

6. Seek the company of supportive people…

…and reduce contact with those who foster feelings of negativity.

7. Read books about people who have succeeded…

…despite the obstacles and look at the principles and qualities behind what they did, their thinking and attitude. Closer to home – seek out role models who embody what you want to become. Learn from their approach and attitude.

8. Know that whatever quality you like or admire in someone…

…is lying dormant in you – waiting to be developed. How else would you recognize it? Make a list of the qualities you most admire in someone else and ask yourself how they can be acknowledged and developed in you.

9. Your past doesn’t have to define your future.

Be aware of your past and willing to let go of it. Each day brings a new opportunity to do and think about things differently.

10. List your goals and the actions you need to take…

…to achieve them every day. Every time you do something that brings you a little closer to achieving your goals, you will feel better about yourself and reduce your unnecessary fears.

Your Coach,



About the Submitter
This piece was originally submitted by Julie Plenty 


The Top 10 Thoughts for People Suffering from Perfectionism

Being a perfectionist can make life very complicated, for one is ever seeking to attain the unattainable. Perfectionists often find it difficult to contemplate being otherwise, and yet the fear of not doing things perfectly can paralyze us.

Here are some thoughts and questions for people suffering from perfectionism:

1. How much does your perfectionism interfere with your life as you would like to live it? Does it make you happy?

2. You know that you cannot really be perfect. Do you know that fear of not being perfect can lead to procrastination so intense that it may become paralysis? Even if not that extreme, it can lead to the inability to start projects, and the inability to finish them.

3. Did you know that the makers of traditionally superb Persian rugs always added a flaw to each carpet? They believed that only the Creator can create perfection, and for them to try to do so would be unduly arrogant. The deliberately added flaw was an admission of their humanity and their humility.

4. What would happen if you chose not to be perfect – to accept minor imperfections in yourself and your work? Would the sky fall? Would there be serious consequences? What would they be?

5. Who originally told you that everything you do has to be perfect? Does the opinion of that person still have the right to run your life? To ruin your life?

6. We are in control of our lives to the extent that we make choices. Do you CHOOSE perfectionism, or does it feel more like a compulsion? If perfectionism is not your choice, how can you move toward the acceptance of yourself as you are, including minor imperfections, as a conscious choice?

7. Think of the people you most like and respect. Are they perfect? Probably not, yet you still like and respect them. Why should you think others would not feel the same way about you?

8. Think of the most perfect presently living person you know. Is this person fully perfect? Is this person lovable? Is this person fun and comfortable to be around? Do you want to be like this person? Do you truly want other people to experience you as you experience him/her?

9. Think of the people you love most in your life. Do you insist that they be perfect? If you do… what kind of a life are you pushing them towards? If you don’t… then why do you demand more of yourself, who should be even closer to you, than you demand of those other people?

10. Perfectionism often prevents us from bringing a project to completion. Can you learn to think of each project or mini-project as a beta version, and bring just that version of it to completion? That way, you are not saying that you must accept it exactly as it is, but you have at least completed it, while knowing that if you need to you can revisit and do more tweaking again later.

Your Coach,



Submitted by Diana Robinson


Empower versus Control

In Dave Kraft’s book Leaders Who Last, he speaks of four key responsibilities of a leader:

1.  Shepherd

2.  Develop

3.  Equip

4. Empower

Today I thought we would highlight what he had to say about the last of these four…empower!

Empowering people has to do with creating an atmosphere that frees people to be their best and do their best work. Among other things, it means not controlling things too tightly and giving people more freedom to innovate/create and put some of their own ideas and personality into their work. It means not falling into the command and control style of leadership that was so prevalent in yesteryear and is slowly but surely on the way out. It is a matter of learning how to lead people without controlling them. At the heart of a “controlling leader” might be insecurity and fear.

  • Fear that someone might outshine me
  • Fear that something might go wrong
  • Fear that someone’s failure might tarnish my reputation
  • Fear that it might not be done as perfectly as I would have done it


Here are seven warning signs from Blogger Ron Edmondson that you may be a controlling leader:

1. People start apologizing prior to approaching you with a new idea

2. You don’t really know how people feel about you, but you assume they all approve of your leadership

3. You assume you are always right

4. You enjoy keeping others with less information than you have

5. You think you should be involved in making all the decisions

6. You fear others being in control of a project

7. You are the final word on every decision

We at Shandel Group look forward to helping you shift from controlling to empowering in all areas of life!

Your Coach,



Overcome your Fear of Failure

The fear of failure is a strong underlying motivator that drives many successful leaders. Failure is defined by you, as an individual, and unfortunately, as a people group, we are much harder on ourselves than anyone else in our sphere of influence. Just as I was reflecting on week 39 of Clarity: Focusing on What Matters, my friend Dave Kraft shared the following post on his blog. If you recall, I have written about courage and yet I love the way that Brad brings all the concepts home. Plus he is scared of jellyfish - readers of Clarity will be humored by that!

Reflecting on last week’s blog on fear and worry, this seems to be a quick little factoid to keep you out of fear and onto courage. Here’s what I had to say about being a woman of Valor at the LEXI Leadership Summit!





Originally posted by Brad Lomenick

What are you afraid of? What are you scared of? What frightens you?

Let’s face it. We are all scared of something. And all of us need a dose of courage to confront what currently is making us afraid.

Courage is facing up to something that frightens you. Looking at it straight on and dealing with it, straight up.

Reality is, we all need courage. Especially leaders. Courage to overcome. Courage to break through barriers. Courage to charge and climb the next hill. Courage to face fears. Courage to conquer and control fears. Fears. Yep.

Many times what holds us back is fear. Being scared. Living scared. Leading scared.

But take courage. Be FEARLESS, not fearful.

Today, what are you scared of? What is holding you back from all that God has created you to be?

For me, my biggest fear is failure. Occasionally it creates some very unhealthy leadership landmines and roadblocks that I have to work through. And is paralyzing, because when a leader is afraid to fail, taking risks then gets moved to the side, and maintaining status quo is the focus. Reality is, for many type A leaders, we are scared to death of failing. Afraid of what our friends will say, what our families will say, and how it will impact our next career season. And afraid of potentially losing what we “feel” like we’ve helped build or create.

And many of us incorrectly assume that in failure, the leader should take all the blame and is responsible no matter what. Not true, but something that still evokes fear.

Fear and failure don’t have to go together. Failure is not something to be scared of. We should respect failure, but not fear it.

Take a bold step. Today.

Bonus: here are some random things I’m been scared of over the course of my life:

1. Storms- up until I was 13 or 14, I was absolutely petrified of storms. I mean scared out of my mind. If there were clouds in the sky in the morning with a chance of storms, I would get physically sick I was so scared. And have to stay home from school. Literally petrified. And in Oklahoma, storms are for real. Tornadoes all the time.

2. Certain Dogs. This one still haunts me because of being bit by a pit bull when I was 5 or 6 years old. Still have the scar on my shin to prove it.

3. Bugs and Snakes. Not a fan at all of spiders or snakes. Actually, pretty much all small bugs shake me up a bit. Bees and wasps as well. I’m sweating just thinking about it…..

4. The Elevator in the St. Louis Gateway Arch. If you’ve been, you know what I’m talking about!!

5. Jellyfish. Hello. Who’s with me?



worry1 (400x307)

Worry is a False Sense of Control

Everyone has fear. The courageous learn to not listen to fear. Instead they choose to take action and press through to do what’s right.

The cowardly learn to listen to fear. They choose either passivity or control to hide behind — and ultimately compromise their values resulting in a boring meaningless life.

Either way it’s a choice. Your choice.

False Sense of Control

Remember I gave up worry for Lent? Well, choosing to not worry is nothing short of a miracle every day. Yes I fail sometimes. But what I notice is that when I stop myself, whatever I am thinking about is not that urgent, rational, or even real. When I stop the thought, nothing in my life changes!

You know why? Worry is trying to control the future, which clearly cannot be done. When we are anxious it is never about the present, it always about the future — and our need to control it.

Worry is a big fat lie and a false sense of control — which is addicting if you haven’t noticed.

Today on a coaching call, I had a client share about his victory over anxiety. He shared that his “A-HA” was that he is really good at solving problems and even better when it is a crisis. He is sometimes at his best in those situations. Therefore, why worry that something might happen when, first of all, it rarely ever comes true, and secondly, when it does, he is the man for the job to solve the problem quickly and efficiently. He has his joy back.

Learn to Trust

It’s true. We have what it takes to solve most problems! We all struggle with different fears, depending on how we are wired. Your fears may not even faze me, while my fears might make you laugh.

In my fast from worry, I am learning how much I suck at trust and lean heavily on worry for a false sense of security and control. However, I am learning the great lesson of trusting in something bigger than myself for that 3% of negative that might happen, and to leave the 97% behind (or at least for tomorrow to worry about LOL).

Live Fearlessly!

I often will ask my clients, “What if the fear of ______ (name area here) did not exist in your life, then what would you do?” The answers that pour forth are so amazing and life-giving it always gives me goosebumps. Try it right now and you will see what I mean.

Dismiss worry from your life! Or at least try it out for a few weeks. Join me for the next two weeks! Do not allow yourself to worry and see what happens!

Oh and one more thing. This entire epidemic of fear is the reason our theme to the 6th Annual LEXI Women’s Leadership Summit is FEARLESS! Send your women to it! Seriously you need to invest in the women in your life in this area of being courageous and bold in all areas. It is Friday, May 2, 2014, and here is a special promotional code for my personal discount when you register: tlc2014. SEND YOUR WOMEN!

Let me know your thoughts below.

Fearlessly Your Coach,


sad-72216_640 (265x400)

I Gave Up Worry for Lent

What, me worry?

Truthfully, I’ve never seen myself as a person who worries. I guess I have so many people around me who worry about everything, I thought I’m was pretty good in the area.


Last month, I returned from vacation on Fat Tuesday. At the airport every TV station had stories about what people were giving up for Lent. I thought, what the heck I need to lose a few pounds. I’ll give up white sugar.

That didn’t sit well with me, though. It had been on my mind to try this ancient 40-day tradition, but I wasn’t very serious and hadn’t gotten around to researching its significance. I decided right then to get real quiet and ask God what I should give up for Lent. I was shocked at the answer.

Fear-Driven Action

The voice in my head said “WORRY.”

Worry?  What? I knew that voice wasn’t me as “worry” would be the last thing in the world I would bring up. Therefore, I thought I’d better take this seriously.

OH MY GOODNESS! What I have realized in the last few weeks is that my worry can look like action at times (aka workaholic.) When I begin to worry, I immediately take action and do something. Except for when I am lying in bed, driving in my car, washing dishes, then I fool myself into calling it planning.

Poison to Our Joy

Now don’t get me wrong. I am all for planning, I’m a business coach, for goodness’ sake! However, I have had to admit in my “fasting from worry” that what often looks like strategizing and planning is plain old-fashion worry…and it is poison to our present joy and happiness.

Take a look at what drives your activities.

Be honest.

Is your busyness based on fear?

LEXI: Get Fearless!

This entire epidemic of fear is the reason our theme of the 6th Annual LEXI Women’s Leadership Summit is FEARLESS!

Send your women to it! Seriously, you need to invest in the women in your life in this area of being courageous and bold in all areas.

It is Friday, May 2, 2014, and here is a special promotional code for my personal discount when you register: tlc2014. SEND YOUR WOMEN!

Let me know your thoughts below.

This is adapted from the article in my monthly newsletter – sign up if you don’t get it already.

Fearlessly Your Coach,



Why Do We Worry about Things that Won’t Happen?

Fear, worry, anxiety. Emotions the most successful leaders in the world face every day.

Do they serve any good purpose?

Wired to Worry

Fear is not bad in and of itself. It is a survival emotion (if you will) that ignites our amygdala to prepare our body for a fight or flight response to impending danger. The problem is our body doesn’t know if the threat is real or perceived. Thus, the brain is predisposed to find the negative (the threat) and alert us.

There may be 99 possibilities for greatness — but our brain will fixate on the 1 potential threat.

Thus, we must be disciplined to learn what is a real threat and take action, and let the other 85% of what will NEVER actually happen stop robbing us of our life, our health, and our joy.

What Are the Odds?

I’m not just making up these numbers. In the mid-1990s, researchers Drs. Adrian Matthews and Gerald Wells found that 85% of what we worry about will never actually happen. Furthermore, of the remaining 15%, we effectively handle the situation effectively 79% of the time!

Basically, for a lousy 3% probability, we allow fear and worry to rob our joy, steal our creativity and compromise our purpose.

You wouldn’t make a business decision based on 3% likelihood, would you? Today, join me in choosing to face whatever MIGHT happen with courage and confidence!

Invest in your women

Oh and one more thing – This entire epidemic of fear is the reason our theme to the 6th Annual LEXI Women’s Leadership Summit is FEARLESS. Send your women to it – seriously you need to invest in the women in your life in this area of being courageous and bold in all areas. It is Friday, May 2nd, and here is a special link for my personal discount. SEND YOUR WOMEN!

Let me know your thoughts below.

Fearlessly Your Coach,



expectation quote 6 (250x250)

What’s the Antidote to Cynicism?

We all want to go big and push hard and reach the super bowl of our dreams, don’t we? Envisioning the future is a good thing! But when you’re collaborating with others and not communicating the vision, you’re setting up your team and your dream for disappointment leading to cynicism.

What’s the antidote?

A cynical culture begins to shift when we are truthful, trusting, and together reaching, collaborating, and celebrating our clearly stated desired outcomes. It begins with authenticity and hope.

When the leader walks out of a meeting, she should feel content, excited, stretched, and engaged. We should all know what expectations have been spoken out into the room and vetted when the team walks out feeling the same way.

As we grow in our emotional intelligence and vulnerability, we will have the confidence to speak what we want, to accept what is realistic, and push back against the status quo for the greatness of the desired result.

So today, take some time to examine your life in all areas and see where you have that culture of cynicism creeping in – squelching your desires and dreams. By the way, you will never realize your dreams if you don’t let the fear of disappointment go. Go to the vulnerable part of you and commit to let yourself feel and desire again. It will require changing your story and trusting yourself and others again.

I would love to hear your thoughts on more ways to become alert to unspoken expectations and to overcome cynicism!

By the way, I take a long look at this topic in my current newsletter. If you aren’t signed up to receive it every month, you can do so here.

Your Coach,



6 Fears That Lead You to Rationalize Your Behavior- Clarity #33

The evolution of a leader includes an ever-increasing emotional intelligence, starting with self-awareness. If you lack self-awareness, you are unable to see when you step out of integrity. In other words, you are unable to see how your words, thoughts, and actions are not in alignment. This dissonance forces an auto response to spin the story — leading to compromised truth, ending with a skewed reality.

Conversely, if you’re a leader with high self-awareness, you are able to quickly discern when and where you are out of alignment with truth. You quickly see your error, admit fault, and take personal accountability. You take action to repair the crack in the relationships due to lack of judgment, and with your words and action, you own the issue at hand. The humility of the self-aware leader leaves plenty of room to learn from mistakes, be curious to what you do not yet know, and be open to feedback as a way to learn and grow.

Most people don’t intentionally rationalize. It comes from being scared, to be blunt. If you have taken the Talent Insight Report, you know that there are four fears that people struggle with and will do most anything to avoid.

  • Fear of Being Taken Advantage Of
  • Fear of Social Rejection
  • Fear of Loss of Security
  • Fear of Making Mistakes

Or how about the two fears of the successful entrepreneur:

  • Will I be found out?
  • Do I have what it takes?

Fear gets in the way of truth, and thus we must rationalize or falsify something in order to psychologically survive and bring a sense of order and control.

What do you think? What are other fears that cause leaders to rationalize?

Your Coach,


Ronnie diving (800x533)

Busting Out of the Box of Misery

Research tells us that 90 percent of what we worry about never comes true. Think of all we miss out on in life — because of the 10 percent! Is it worth it? I think not. I’ve encountered so many people whose greatest strengths had yet to be discovered because fear keeps them in a safe, controlled box. That box is called misery.

That’s one thing I love about entrepreneurs. We are notorious for taking tons of risks and thinking outside the box. However, do not think for one moment we don’t wrestle every day with our fears. In fact, the entrepreneurs who are truly successful are the ones who face and conquer their fears — not avoid them. In fact, in my experience of coaching 500-plus entrepreneurs, the key to their success is becoming aware of and addressing their fears — not avoiding them. They have learned that the reward is worth the risk of busting out of the box of misery.Ronnie swimming

What reward are you looking for? What is it you desire more than your comfortable box of misery? Don’t let fear stop you from all the rewards that come from busting through your fears.

If you read my newsletter or last week’s blog you heard how my nephew faced his fears about swim team. Now it is time for you to conquer yours! Next time, I’ll share the four steps to conquering F.E.A.R.!

If you want immediate gratification just email me.

Just say no to misery!

Your Coach,