In this post I want to talk about a concept I use to combat worry and other forms of fear called Future Pacing. Future Pacing is a Neurolinguistic Programming (NLP) technique that allows you to instantly overcome fears by using meditation. Now before you get your defenses up, I know what you’re thinking. Many people associate NLP with hypnosis. Although hypnosis is one technique that NLP incorporates that I do not recommend, NLP is not all about hypnosis. In short, NLP is about programming the subconscious mind by manipulating the language of the mind.
While NLP doesn’t live up to the scientific evidence that it claims and for the most part it is not credible tool for change, some of the techniques are effective. You guessed it Future Pacing is one of those techniques.
Future Pacing entails using meditation to visualize your future. You literally use your imagination to see your tomorrow. Many top athletes use future pacing to enhance their performance. They visualize every play of their game and see it happening the way they desire. The result is they are more focused and prepared for the game. This same concept will help you overcome fear and be more prepared for the game of life.
To Future Pace fear you visualize the worst thing that can possibly happen, and then the worst thing that can probably happen. In both cases you see the power of God working on your behalf. Then after you have virtually lived through that fear you come back to reality with the power of fear dismantled.
Here are steps to use Future Pacing to overcome fear:
Identify the real fear. For example if God told you to quit your job and pursue your dream of starting your own business, what exactly would you be afraid of? The business failing and you’re not able to support your family? What people would say if you fail? You must be specific and clearly state you fear. “I am afraid that if I start my own business it will fail and leave me in poverty.”
Begin to meditate and imagine the worst possible outcome. See it failing and you left without a dime. You have no way of supporting yourself because of the debt. You have to stay there long enough to feel the emotion of it and to see it all the way through. What are the real chances for that outcome?
Now imagine a possible failure. A real one. What could you learn from it? Would your life change dramatically if you would fail? What would be the experience for you?
Now come back to reality and ask yourself: Which is more painful? The FEAR to act or having every day the same FRUSTRATION if you don’t act. “Is that fear big enough to stop me from obeying God and pursuing my dreams?” If the answer is no then you have conquered your fear.
If the answer is still yes, then set parameters that you are comfortable. What if you went into business with the condition of not spending your savings? Or what if you limited the amount that you borrowed to a comfortable level? The idea here is to find a place that you will be comfortable enough to obey.
Now imagine the best outcome. See yourself coming out successful and living your dream. Meditate on what you would look like, how would your environment look. Stay there until you internalize it; until you can feel it on the inside.
Take Action! To overcome fear you must face it. Burn the bridge behind you by taking an action that makes it impossible for you to turn back.
Try Future Pacing to control your fears. Until next post I pray this post has been a blessing to you.