Lesson 6: Overcoming Your Fears
By: Jessica and The First 10 Minutes Team
We have an entire course devoted to overcoming your approach anxiety. When you study that course it will continue to support you in dealing with your fears of women; this lesson is a great place to start not only to support you with your fears with women, but to help you to understand how some fears are affecting many areas of your life. These are very basic mindset tools to incorporate into your arsenal.
Would you believe me if I told you that fear of failure is not the biggest issue? Fear of humiliation, rejection, and sometimes even success are more paralyzing than the fear of failure. We will start with fear itself and our opinion of what to do to work with it as it pertains to approaching women.
There are hundreds of explanations of what fear is and several acronyms that have been created to try to mask fear. We say don’t overcome it…dismiss it.
Allow us to introduce a concept that will help you to eliminate fear in all areas of your life. Knowing that our primary concern is to help you with the women in your life, we will gear it towards the fear that men have when approaching women or making big decisions.
You may not agree with us at first but be open to the possibility that it is true…
Fear is not a thing out there that is trying to get you or an inanimate object that is planning to cause you harm, embarrassment or humiliation. It is simply a creation of your imagination.
So now let me back up my statement… what tense do you believe that fear occurs in: past, present, or future?
The answer is future tense. It is impossible to be afraid of the past. You can only relate to the past to remember a time that you were afraid (and to support my point… most of the things we were afraid of became no big deal once we tried what we thought we were afraid to do). Fear is created in the imagination by what could happen and the interesting part is that most people create this fear by dreaming up all of the possibilities that are terrible, as opposed to what could happen that is great. It is your brain’s way of trying to protect you, and your sub-conscious has no way of discerning your imagination from reality so you “feel” afraid to the point you may have butterflies or even pain related to the thoughts of what could happen.
Disclaimer: I am not saying that a healthy perception of fear is not good for you. For instance, when you are rock climbing, a good notion created in your imagination of the result of falling is an excellent way of using “fear.”
What I’m asking you to grasp is the possibility that the fear when dealing with women in your life is simply your creation. In other words, if you’re looking at a beautiful woman across the way and you decide that you’re going to approach her and fear begins to creep up inside of you about the potential result of what will happen, you can simply question the fear as your imagination.
You will begin to see that you are creating the possibilities of either rejection or failure. You are imagining what will happen to you, therefore you are creating fear based on what you believe will happen.
Hopefully, you can see that this basis of imagination is what is creating the mindset that is holding you back. It’s keeping you from stepping forward and moving in the direction that you want to go and approaching women with confidence. So how do you change it?
As simple as you think this is going to sound it is exactly the same thing that you already are doing. Instead of imagining all of the horrors that could potentially happen, simply thank those thoughts for visiting and create a new intention for what’s possible. Now what you are doing is using your imagination, which in some cases could have been paralyzing fear, and changing your own imagination to create encouragement as well as a terrific support for yourself, so then if she chooses, by whatever momentary lapse of sanity, to not engage with you it is understood and recognized as truth that her choice has nothing to do with you personally! How could it? She doesn’t have any clue what you bring to the table! It is her own imagination (fear) that is neglecting her from having an amazing experience with you.
There is a great quote by Dr. Wayne Dyer, “Change the way you look things and the things you look at change.”
I know we categorized this in and about approaching women, but the reality is that your fears are simply your imagination of the worst-case scenarios and if you can replace those thoughts with more supporting thoughts, you begin to replace what used to be fear with optimism and support!
Fear is your own creation, keep it if you want to continue to be held hostage…change it if you choose.
We told you that we are working to change your mindset completely!
Let’s move on to that fear of success we talked about and another mindset changing concept.
The Scary Known and Unknown
We have referenced this statement many times for you in other areas of the website relating to women and their environments. As we stated for them, the simple explanation is regardless of their current situation. At least they know what the situation is and what to expect; any change to that situation, like adding you to the picture presents, a question of the unknown. All of this relates back to the Better Deal. Basically, if her current situation is better or even seemingly better than the situation you are presenting she will choose to stay with what she knows instead of risking the unknown. In some cases, even if she recognizes that the deal that is being presented is better than the deal she currently has, the fear of the unknown is so overwhelming that she chooses to stay in her current situation instead of risking an unknown result. True if she is in a relationship or not.
Now, let me apply the same principle to you and your situation. Approaching a beautiful woman and succeeding by getting her number or setting up a date would mean that you are going to experience a change in your life. Regardless of where that particular story ends up, you now have a change in your life because you can no longer justify to yourself that your self imposed shortcomings are accurate. Now, all of the excuses you have made in the past about your looks, height, weight, financial situation and every other self imposed limitation must be questioned; Simple logic right? So, how best to avoid that traumatic scenario? Never approach. The unsatisfying situation you are in is simple: you know the rules and the outcome, you are justified in your status, who can question it right? The results are in plain site – “no girl, so I am safe, I am justified,” you say. Even if this is not a conscious thought, it is part of the hold back.
Even though I can hear you screaming, “But, I want to date hot women!” Sorry, but you are and have been demonstrating this point every time you hesitate or choose not to take action. Every time you walked up to a hot girl in the past and unconsciously sabotaged yourself by assuming that she would not be interested or worse simply hoping that she doesn’t shoot you down in a humiliating fashion; both of course will create the same result because you have already convinced yourself she is the Better Deal and therefore demonstrated to her that you are getting the prize and she is being generous if she goes out with you or sadly even just talks with you in some cases.
I am not here to beat you down. I am here to point out a fact that you most likely have been overlooking in your quest to meet women and to find “the one.” The point is that most guys are quite enamored with their current situation because it helps them to relate to their friends, peers, and family. You all have discussed many times the lack of availability of hot women and how hard it is to find the right girl for you. You are ok with the fact that it is hard and you have convinced yourself that you must settle and hope that some day a decent looking woman will have mercy on your tortured soul and be with you. We see it all the time with guys making statements like, “Girls like her don’t date guys like us.”
All of this is a huge security blanket intricately designed to make sure that you are safe in your environment, justified and more importantly impervious to change. I would dare even say that you are addicted to your situation like a smoker is to theirs. How many times have you heard them say the magic phrase “I want to quit.”? They may even have started the quitting process time and time again, but what would they do with their hands? Would they have to start living a healthy lifestyle? What about that habit of the oral fixation they have created? They lose their justification for stained teeth, their justification for taking the elevator and so on and so on. You see it may not even be what you think about consciously that is holding you back but all of the auxiliary thoughts that are painting a picture of the unknown…the scary unknown. Just like the situation with the smoker, they choose to face the threat of death over the change in their lifestyle. You are choosing the somber existence you have come to embrace: lonely, distraught, and excuse ridden over the unknown scenarios that would present themselves with success of dating a beautiful woman.
For fear of you adopting the list of supporting self imposed thoughts, I will not make a list of all of the possibilities of “terrible” events that could occur if you were to be successful with a beautiful woman and start dating like I did with the smoking scenario.
The point is that you must adopt a different mindset around your situation. You must create a vision of possibilities of the happily ever after scenario you can create. You have resources around you now that you have never had in the past; the information in this website, the personal coaching options, the image transformation materials, and of course your brothers in this site to support and help you in the approach, the beginning of the relationship and current and future tools we have to keep it (the relationship and you) successful as long as you choose.
It is not necessary to overcome your fear of the unknown, but it is necessary for you to decide that you are no longer satisfied with the current situation you are in; that the risk of failure and more importantly the risk of success is less terrifying to you than the safe world you have created. I have geared this towards approaching women but make no mistake it is a tool to help you in all arenas.
For example: weight loss – if you lose the weight you will have to change your lifestyle, buy new clothes, not get to eat the foods you like, on and on…
Another example: job change – what if I like it better? What if the company I go to downsizes? What if I get a promotion right away? Will I have to move if I am making more money? Will I have to get new friends? On and on…
You get the point?
Make the choice today that you are no longer a slave to your existence; that you have the choice and tools to make the change you want and that change is good. The process of change is fun and exciting! Most importantly you have the choice to not allow your future to be dictated by your past. I hope to make it clear to you that you are not the sum of your past experiences. You are and can consciously decide to be exactly what you choose to be in this moment. Remember what you like about what you have done and experienced, but do not be a prisoner to its perceived safety.
If it helps for you to know; it is as wonderful as you imagine on the other side: the good, the bad, and the unknown.
Addressing the Fear of Talking to Women Directly
I hope that you are aware that talking to women is a very common fear among men. Just like the fear of public speaking gets a ton of press as being more feared than death (this is not an exaggeration, it is what surveys have found). It is our opinion that the fear of talking to women is the same animal. It has all of the same elements involved: fear of public humiliation, fear that you will freeze up and say the wrong things, fear that the people will not like you, fear that your message is unimpressive, fear that when you are finished talking no one will be left in the room, no one will respond, no one will participate, and my favorite, the fear that they will reflect back to you that sad, disappointed look of pity. The list can probably go on and on for some of you, but know that there is help. This is a skill that you can improve and become comfortable doing.
We think it is great that there is a ton of gimmicks and tools out there for guys to use to pick up women. We support the mission of those gurus that are out there to help you to be a success. But this is not about that. This is about one of the key elements that tend to get left out of the equation with the pick up artists. Namely, if you don’t talk to any girls, all of the magic feathers in the world are not going to help you. Like any skill, this takes practice to do it well.
Let’s talk about some facts to help you get over your core fears of talking to women:
1. Talking to women is not in itself stressful; you create the stress and fear in your own head and we have already talked about that. When approaching and talking to a woman nothing terrible, physically painful or permanently damaging can EVER happen to you (save the scenario where she has a huge boyfriend with no sense of humor). As Winston Churchill said, “You have nothing to fear but fear itself.” Women won’t bite you (unless you’re lucky, and that would come until later anyway).
2. You do not have to be smooth or refined to be a success and we will talk more about this in the next course. You don’t have to practice all the techniques you’re learning on AverageGuy.com until they’re perfect before you start approaching women.
3. Once you get through the initial approach the topics will feed from conversation (see the courses on communication and flirting and creating attraction for more info), so you don’t have to have an entire conversation with backup lines of conversation ready in your head before you approach.
4. Your success will come the easiest when you are not tied to the outcome…when you’re willing to walk away and say, “Next!” (we will talk about this in the next course on approach and in the approach anxiety courses). Accepting and believing that you’ve got a lot to offer and that she is the one that will benefit from being with you. When you decide this one just HAS to work and you determine that you’ll do whatever it takes to make that happen, you’re screwed (and not in a good way). Stay confident in the fact that you’re Bringing the Better Deal and be willing to walk away from the one you’re talking to and she’ll eat out of the palm of your hand.
5. Humility is not an admirable trait in the first few minutes of an encounter, but you must learn when to turn it on and show it to her (see the humility the curse of the nice guy in the nice-guy-itis course). So approach with confidence and be willing to talk yourself up with your presentation and body language. You are a great guy who will make her life better. Be sure she knows that loud and clear. You will learn the skills you need to do this action without sounding like a braggart as you advance your knowledge and skills without speaking at all!
6. You are not in control of her reactions or behavior, so relax. You can help to guide her towards being more attracted to you by your demeanor, body language, and ability to make her feel safe, secure, excited and therefore sexual but you cannot control her. All women will not be into you, no matter what you know, how you look, or act. This may be for no other reason than her bad day at work or the dork that just tried to buy her a drink. Whatever the reason, it’s no big deal. So, just relax and approach her and don’t worry about how she reacts.
7. The more you think about it, the higher the possibility of screwing up. This is true mostly because by the time you come up with what you think is brilliant to say, you will have already delivered the message that you were not ready to meet her, or that you considered her more of a prize than an equal through your presentation and body language. ACT, DON’T THINK!
8. The women you approach truly do want you to succeed. Trust us when we say she is tired of being approached by yet another simpleton doing all the same old same old and not being confident enough to stand up for themselves (see the article by Jessica “Please Approach Me”).
9. Laughing is a good thing and humor coming from a relaxed, confident, masculine and carefree man is going to be funny. So whatever you are saying is perfectly OK. Learn to be OK with whatever you are saying and more importantly with expressing yourself.
Obviously from the list of other courses I have referenced, the fear of talking to women is not just something we can tell you to get over, but with some self confidence training and work on your part, we can help you to make the transition step by step just like if you were afraid to speak in public, we would work you up to getting onto the stage.
Take it upon yourself to work on your stage fright. For the time being, look for articles, courses, and exercises we provide in the site to help you to improve your self confidence in what you are saying and work on the self image, self esteem, and self worth (Better Deal) items that we have reminded you about. Realize, test, and accept the power of offering a better deal! Take some classes if they are available to you like improv humor classes. Organizations like Toastmasters can improve your confidence speaking in public and therefore help you to be more confident on a one-on-one basis. Just remember the list we made and you will feel a lot less frustrated with your ability to approach and talk to women. Continue to practice and learn and one day in the not to distant future you will look back and wonder why you haven’t been pulling some of your new moves all of your life! We will tell you what those moves are later, but now it is time to work on the most important move of all and that is to talk to her!
We can go on and on about scenarios and situations, but the fact of the matter is the information we have covered is never going to trump real world experience, the best cure we can offer you to get over your fear of talking to women is to actually talk to women.
As you are going through the courses on approaching women you will discover that we have you covered from several different perspectives to include a course written by Jessica so that you can get a woman’s point of view as it pertains to men approaching women and the mindset changes that you need to implement as well as what is going on in their heads. This is here to bring up your confidence and willingness to approach women with the attitude that is going to improve your success ratio.
Continue your studies and please ask questions in the advice columns and forums.