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Dealing with Fear: Why Fear Can Be Good For Your Business


Dealing With Fear and Anxiety - Principle 4:
Maintaining Homeostasis, Self Sabotage,
and Stepping Out of Your Comfort Zone

If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams,
brand endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he
will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.
Henry David Thoreau

The above quote is inspiring. It is also incomplete, for it is also true that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams he will meet with homeostasis.

What Is Homeostasis?

Homeostasis is the tendency of a system or organism to stay the same. It's like a thermostat that keeps change within a certain range. Call that range your comfort zone. In order to learn and grow, it is necessary to leave your comfort zone, yet every time you do, homeostasis kicks in, slowing your progress or halting it altogether.

Homeostasis often shows up as fear. For example, you'll be moving along nicely toward a certain goal when, seemingly out of the blue, you get panicky and stop. You get an interview or you have a proposal accepted, and once the initial excitement wears off you are left with the sick certainty that you cannot live up to the opportunity.

Because homeostasis is a systemic response to change, it can feel like self sabotage. There is an important difference: self sabotage implies that some part of you has an active desire to undermine your progress. In contrast, maintaining homeostasis is a value-neutral, automatic response to change. It is not the result of a secret desire to fail or of any hidden agenda other than the built-in tendency of the system to stay the same.

If you mistake maintaining homeostasis for self sabotage, you may waste precious energy beating yourself up for limiting beliefs or hidden agendas. If, indeed, you have such issues, it will be well for you to address them. However, you can be in marvelous mental and emotional health, free of limiting beliefs, and still run into a brick wall when homeostasis kicks in.

Understanding Homeostasis

Fortunately, the better you understand homeostasis, the less power it will have over you. Here are some key points to keep in mind.

a. Homeostatic fear shows up regardless of whether the change is good or bad, wise or foolhardy. The intensity of fear and resistance is related to the size and pace of the change, not to the quality (good, bad, wise, unwise) of the change.

b. You may encounter homeostatic fear among family, friends, colleagues and clients as well as in yourself. This does not have to mean that these people have a secret desire to sabotage you. Their concerns may simply be the expression of natural resistance to any change.

Next: What is Important in Working with Homeostasis to Get Unstuck

About the Author
Molly Gordon is a Master Certified Coach, who shows accidental entrepreneurs how to manifest the success that is the natural consequence of living their hearts' desires with integrity, authenticity, and passion. Since 1996, she has coached hundreds of clients through personal and professional transformation. Her unique coaching style is informed by her experience as a business owner and artist as well as her lifetime commitment to service and creativity. She is a widely sought after speaker and facilitator.

Molly says:
I support my clients to live lives of meaning and prosperity. Learn more about business coaching and personal growth coaching I offer. When you are ready to transform your life, email me,, to discuss whether coaching is right for you and to see if we are a good fit. Until then, please accept my heartfelt good wishes.

Feel the fear and do it anyway. Susan Jeffers

How to Overcome Fears and Anxiety
by Molly Gordon, MCC

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Business Coach and Personal Growth Coach Molly Gordon
available in Greater Seattle Area and internationally can be reached at: | Phone: 360.633.4397 | Fax: 206.201.5020


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