S:0747 Distinction: Scared vs. Terrified

(Distinctions are subtleties of language that, when gotten, cause a shift in a belief, behavior, value or attitude.)

 

It’s easy to get scared. There are many things during the course of life about which you can become scared. It’s okay to be scared.

But it’s not okay to be terrified. When you’re terrified you are at risk of being overwhelmed by your emotions, which leads to the well-known fight/flight/freeze reaction.

When terrified your options are limited to reacting. When scared you have the time and space to respond to the situation. Responding is much preferable to reacting.

Putting yourself, from time to time, in situations which scare you can be useful. They can help you grow beyond your current limiting beliefs. There is also a great sense of satisfaction from mastering something which used to scare you.

But allowing yourself to be in terrifying situations will keep you closed in, limited in options, and it fosters a sense of feeling separate from others and from life.

 

Coaching Point: What is something which used to scare you, but now doesn’t?

 

Copyright 2010 Steve Straus. All rights reserved.