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Are you fearless? How was your fearlessness achieved? Is “Just do it!” fearlessness or stupidity?

It makes me nervous when I see the rampant usage of “fearless” in various advertising campaigns.

It’s not confined to promotion of extreme sports or adventurous activities. There are universities that promote the idea that “Fearless begins here!”

Now I admit that I’m not attracted to the adrenaline rush allegedly associated with many risky activities. For those who are so attracted, it’s their choice and their decision. Though, I do abhor it when the consequences of those activities cause personal and/or financial costs to families, communities and public rescue organisations that are funded by taxpayers and ratepayers or charity donations. Think about: loss at sea, rescue from remote areas or other misadventure.

So what is your risk profile – your appetite for risk? For after all, fear is about risk.

Fear is a natural part of our fight or flight genetics and metabolism. Anxiety is part of fear. Peace is a part of diminished anxiety about the future that has already changed and always will change.

To diminish anxiety and its sibling fear, you need to be able to undertake a risk-assessment. This requires identification of events that could possibly happen based on experience that is broader than your own, the likelihood of such events occurring and the impacts any of them might have if they were to occur. Once you’ve identified them, you need to determine how you would treat each of them.

This is an on-going reflective process of life. If you continue to focus on the possible adverse events without such analysis and application of treatments (how you deal with them), you will remain fearful and anxious when various triggering events occur.

If you mindlessly ignore the future possible events, then consequences can be catastrophic. No mountain-climber with any modicum of common sense would undertake such an extreme sport without being properly prepared. You need to be prepared also, otherwise such situations reek of pure stupidity.

By developing your ability to gather facts about possible events, to analyze them and to treat them you move closer to fearlessness through knowing that your personal leadership will help you to surmount any challenge and seek a favourable outcome. Mostly, you should then win and be able to celebrate successful completion. Occasionally, you might still lose but you’ll have been aware of the consequences before you undertake it and can reflect about what learnings you can take from it for the future.

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