The Fear Fountain

The onset and progression of fear reminds me of the pavement fountains you often see in cities around the world.  You know the ones, they shoot up quickly, you never know exactly where from, they often start as one spray and rapidly multiply. 

It’s incredible how little control we can have over our fears.  Often what starts off as a small, intermittent burst can, within a specific environment, gather momentum.  If we add pressure, additional fears, and a feeling of lack of control, we’ve created a whole fear fountain. 

Not only do these fountains have a will of their own, but they’re also often known to draw in other people or inadvertently spray unsuspecting bystanders. 

Fears such as: abandonment, getting things wrong, dealing with conflict or rejection are often deep rooted, unconscious, historical fears.  As such, unless dealt with effectively, they will return each time we’re put in a position of uncertainty or challenge.  Take a fear of conflict for example, if you grew up in a household with a lot of conflict, in order deal with a perceived threat you will have automatically employed a fight, flight or freeze safety action.  If you weren’t taught alternative strategies throughout your life, you may still carry out that same action when there is a perceived conflict of any kind, such as a challenge in the board room.   What helped you avoid a threat at as a child is now impacting your ability as a leader. 

How can you help your leaders deal with these deep-rooted fears? 

  • Firstly, helping them identify their fear and its origins.
  • Acknowledge its justification in certain circumstances.
  • Review alternative (more helpful) strategies to deal with the fear.

Here at Ashbridge Solutions we understand you may not have time to carry out these actions with your team, that’s where we can help.  We provide an honest, pragmatic and cost-effective approach to supporting your team members and helping them to become the best versions of themselves. 

Contact us for more information.


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