Monday MindSet Moment–How to Shift Your MindSet When Fear Grips You

Donna Blevins MindSet Coach MindShift ExerciseFear is one of those MindSet monsters that plays tricks on us in both our everyday lives and at the poker table. Yet, some fear is good. Like the fear that we are in physical danger-- that primal instinct that makes the hair stand up on the back of our necks, or sends a chill down our spine. Heed that fear. Listen to it. Take action to protect yourself. Fold that hand. There will be other cards to play.

Most fear that comes from our minds does not serve our best interest. When the fear MindSet grips us, it clouds our judgment and limits our choices. I just got off a coaching call with one of my clients, who was experiencing fear. I'd like to share some of that session with you.

When I asked, “What do you fear,” the answers came fast. The specifics are insignificant, much like the specifics of a poker hand are less important that what is going on in our mind at the time we take action or are frozen in our tracks.

These words stuck out: “I'm afraid I won't... I hated that... I made so many mistakes that...”

I asked again, “What do you really fear?

After a pause, this came flatly, “I'm afraid that I'll make another mistake. I fear that it will repeat again. I haven't learned to let go of my mistakes.”

Doing the same things over and over again and expecting different results. That's what Albert Einstein called the definition of insanity.

Anxiety is what's known as future-oriented fear because we cannot control what will happen next. We make mistakes because we take action; we make mistakes when we don't take action. Sometimes we win, and sometimes we lose, and sometimes we simply mess up. That's a part of life.

Most fear is unfounded. Fear is...

  • False
  • Evidence
  • Appearing
  • Real

I went on to ask my client, “When do you feel courageous?”

Response: “When I don't have pressure put on me.”

Donna: “From where does that pressure come?

Response: “Myself. I inflict that pressure. I know that. But I felt I've made bad decisions over the past 5 years, and the gremlin grandfather inside me lashes out at me. I allow that voice to keep talking.”

Donna: “What can you do to quieten that voice?”

Response: “Use Donna's tool... look to the right and say, 'Get off my shoulder!' Make that movement. Looking to the right and flick that voice off my shoulder. I know it works, but sometimes, I don't do that quickly enough. Now, I realize I can flick this thing off my shoulder time and time again. Just by doing that simple action three times, I feel so much better."

That's using the power of our Body-Mind connection to shift our Mindset.

Shifting our MindSet is not a once-and-done thing. It is a continual process.

We have 7 seconds to take action before a negative thought takes root. In order to be able to take action within that small opportunity window, we must first recognize that we have had a negative thought. That's the rub.


Monday MindShift Moment

Activate your Energetic Radar

  • Set your intention to activate your Energetic Radar.
  • Recognize you have just had a thought that does not serve you.
  • In the moment you have that realization, be compassionate and forgive yourself for having the thought.
  • In one smooth motion, put your right hand over your heart, move your right hand onto your left shoulder, and stretch your right hand over your left shoulder and touch your back.
  • Grin broadly as you vigorously pat yourself on the back and say aloud, “Good for me! Congratulations, I have just intercepted, blocked a negative thought, and shifted my MindSet!”

In the moment that you grinned, patted yourself on your back, and exclaimed your congratulation, you have nudged that negative thought out of your mind and replaced it with uplifting energy.


Until next time remember my MindSet Motto:

Play the cards life deals you as if you have already won.

Donna Blevins
Poker MindSet Coach

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10 Responses to Monday MindSet Moment–How to Shift Your MindSet When Fear Grips You

  1. JoNo Gravatar December 19, 2011 at 9:32 pm #

    LOL! Love the "Pat Yourself on the Back"! It does feel good to get a pat on the back, even when you give one to yourself. :)

    • Donna BlevinsNo Gravatar December 19, 2011 at 9:58 pm #

      You bet it does feel good to get a pat on the back, Jo! The first time I did this, I was amazed at how good it felt, and I’m thrilled with how many people are using this MindShift Exercise.

      You know I like to keep it Pure & Simple~!

  2. kknightNo Gravatar December 20, 2011 at 2:46 am #

    WOW that is a wonderful feeling when I pat my back…..Everytime I make a good decision…and everytime I am rewarded.  Easy enough to feel good….but when I bust out after making a good decision and look at the player (usually a donkey) that was playing cards they shouldn't play. I pat myself on the back for playing and making good decisions playing poker  and convince myself that "…was an interesting play…" and pat myself on the back and keep going.   Because we all know the donkeys don't make the final table…. 

    • Donna BlevinsNo Gravatar December 20, 2011 at 10:36 am #

      Sometimes those poor players do make the final table, kk, and we want them to. We want their poor play to be reinforced so they continue making poor decisions to our wise ones.

  3. Yvonne A JonesNo Gravatar December 20, 2011 at 9:20 am #

    Donna,
    We are often our worse critic and we beat ourselves up over past actions, as your client did, over and over.  Regardless of  education, status, whatever that make many people appear to 'have it together', it's a human failing. We discussed this at our congregation meeting recently, and I am just as guilty as the next person is about  this.  It's good to be reminded of the statement in the Scriptures that tell us that "God is greater than our hearts."   He sees us as we want to be – not what or who we were in the past. 
    Unhealthy fear is a quality that can sap us of our vitality because, as you noted, it's such a negative emotion, so it's truly important to find ways to shake it off.

  4. Lois BedgoodNo Gravatar December 20, 2011 at 10:45 am #

    Oh: I love it, when you can pat your self on the  back, something good happens and you feel so much better. You won the race. Thats good.That makes you feel like you just won the game. Thats what I want , to be able to win playing poker.
    Thanks Donna
    That is great

    • Donna BlevinsNo Gravatar December 20, 2011 at 11:14 am #

      Lois, hold that winning in your mind. It already exists. It’s a matter of making the correct decisions that lead you along the path to that destination.

  5. CinchNo Gravatar February 21, 2012 at 1:39 am #

    Love the part about "recognize that you have just had a thought that does not serve you." That gets to the crux of how we talk to ourselves and how we can establish a new line of communication with ourselves, even from and to inchoate parts, that lead to new vistas and even an entirely different life. The most magical thing that a human being can do is to change their experience of self, and this is done largely with words, in the self-talk.

    • Donna BlevinsNo Gravatar February 21, 2012 at 10:46 am #

      You are absolutely right Cinch! Our words set us up for success or or failure. We choose.

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