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Don’t Think: The Secret To Conquering Your Fears

fearSome people have really funny fears, like bridges or fish (Or donuts . . . according to my friend Julia Ryan. Someone please tell me that is not real!). And then there’s the really absurd fears like . . . um . . . guys (which I dealt with for a good portion of my life . . . #homeschooled).

Ten year old Amanda

*needs food*

*finds vending machine*

*Oh my word there’s a guy buying food there I’ll just walk all the way across the parking lot to the other vending machine AHHHHH THERE’S ANOTHER ONE WHERE ARE THESE THINGS COMING FROM it’s looking at me oh mercy someone save me*

Anywho . . .

But there are also those fears that make sense. Like change, failure, and death.

I unknowingly have discovered the antidote to fear . . . do you want to know what it is? TOO BAD you’ll have to check back tomorrow.

Just kidding! Here it is below . . .

Everyone is afraid of something. Help get over that fear with advice from Hint: IT'S SUPER SIMPLE!

Ready? Here’s the life-changing, empowering secret to conquering any fear:

Don’t think.

. . .


Yeah, that’s right! Don’t think!

I naturally do this, and a friend the other day made me realize that this often disobliging characteristic of mine is actually, in this case, rather perfect. I jump into things with little or no regard to consequences. This has caused me many, many lovely difficulties (as you can imagine) BUT it has also helped me conquer my fears.

So let’s talk about to major fears I’m sure all of us deal with: failure and change.

Everyone is afraid of something. Help get over that fear with advice from Hint: IT'S SUPER SIMPLE!

Yup. That’s my number one fear. Sounds super prideful, doesn’t it?

But it’s the truth! I hate failing. That’s why I don’t like participating in group games—because I know I’ll lose (unless it’s Scrabble, charades, or Mexican train) and I DON’T WANT TO HAVE TO DEAL WITH THAT FAILURE. Whether it’s dodgeball or kickball, I’d rather sit on the sidelines and cheer for the people winning than see myself lose.

That’s why playing the piano in front of people terrifies me (shaking knees, sweating hands, heart beating faster than Thumper’s cute wittle bunny feet . . .). That’s why before every soccer game I play, I feel like I could puke or pass out.

Or maybe both. (Preferably not at the same time.)

That’s why driving scares me; getting a job scares me; and a lot of other things scare me.

But do you know what I’ve done? I’ve hopped into this fear without thinking. Isn’t that so lovely? *sarcasm*

I’ve signed up on the rotation to play for my church’s offertory. I take part in annual piano competitions and quarterly recitals.


I was fifteen years old when my dad tromped into the kitchen and nonchalantly asked, “Hey . . . would you like to play soccer?” Never mind I’d only touched the ball a handful of times as a little kid in just-for-fun leagues. I said, “Sign me up!” without considering ANYTHING and found I was soon blissfully in over my head.


I don’t think these fears will ever be 100% conquered, but I actually think that’s good. It’s the fear that drives us to better ourselves—it makes our pride kick and say, “Hey, dude—you are not going to stop me from living my life.”

Everyone is afraid of something. Help get over that fear with advice from Hint: IT'S SUPER SIMPLE!



New schools . . . new houses . . . new siblings . . . why must life change?

I’m perfectly content right now. I don’t have the perfect life by any stretch of the imagination, but life is still really good. Staying sixteen forever, playing soccer with my buddies, taking walks with Lucy and Benjamin . . . that don’t sound so bad.

But, ya know what? Life has to change. I have to get “old” . . . I have to step on that soccer field for the last time one day and hug all my teammates goodbye . . . Lucy and Benjamin won’t be babies forever.

As humans, all we can see is the here and now. The future is this obscure, abysmal hole of interminable possibilities. Good and evil wrestle together, formulating ideal and not-so-ideal realities.

Maybe today is good—BUT maybe tomorrow will be even better.

Yeah, the future is scary. Just ask a teenager whose mood changes give her whiplash (can I hear an amen from all the girls around the world?). But we can’t stop God from writing the pages of our book. He has more planned for us, and wishing we could stay in this period of time isn’t going to stop Him from leading you on to the grander things He has on the next page.

Everyone is afraid of something. Help get over that fear with advice from Hint: IT'S SUPER SIMPLE!

The next time you feel like passing out because of your fear, just stop.

Take a breath.

Don’t think.

And hop right into whatever fear you’re facing. You’ll feel like you’re drowning at first but then life will throw you a really cool donut-shaped inflatable and you’ll be perfectly fine!

(Unless you’re afraid of donuts . . . then it can be a duck. Unless you’re afraid of ducks . . . then it can be a piece of pizza. Unless you’re afraid of pizza . . . then it can be a commercial, run-of-the mill, handy dandy, plain Jane blue innertube. WHAT YOU’RE AFRAID OF THE COLOR BLUE OKAY COME ON!)

So . . . who’s ready to conquer their fears?


Guys, this is what canned applause is for.

*insert thunderous applause*

What are you afraid of? What do you do to combat the fear of failure? The fear of change?

More reading:

  • How to do the stuff you need to do without having a nervous breakdown — It’s A Mind Thing
  • Four tips on how to change your “I can’t” to a thunderous “I CAN” — I Can’t Do This
  • And what is scarier than growing up?! Here’s a post all about that gloriously terrifying phenomenon — Growing Up
  • Sarah Kate

    Well, thankfully, none of these are my fears, especially not boys and donuts. And fish. I love fishing and eating them, and I love River Monsters. Sorry to those of u who don’t. :/
    I don’t ever think.
    Well, let me rephrase that. I think plenty, just not when I need to. Amanda probably knows what I mean. *winks evily* You just sound so much like me just from reading your blog posts. :P If we ever got together, we’d probably cause some disaster that would change the course of history. *winks again*

    • River Monsters is EPIC! I watched it one night at a sleepover and it made me pretty scared . . . but in a good way!
      Isn’t that the truth? And sometimes when I do think, I was in a situation that I shouldn’t’ve thought. You know what I mean? Oh goodness we would be quite a disastrous pair! ;) lol

  • BayRay

    Ahh great post!!;) I knew this was gonna be a good post as soon as I saw one of my biggest fears in the first sentence lol;) FISH!! *insert screams* Im supermegaafraid of fish–like SUPERMEGAAFRAID of fish–to the point where I cant swim alone (even in a pool–yikes!), yes, i know, its very sad ;) I don’t know if you’ve heard of River Monsters but a mighty lot of my fish nightmares have sprung from that show haahaa!;) A few of my other fears are; wasps, lava, and dinosours. Yeah that probably sounds ridonculous, but I cant help it!;) lol!
    I love the point you made about not thinking and just jumping into things and how that helps you conquer your fears, I totes agree! I too am a person that doesn’t do much (if any) thinking and I think(haahaa:) ive been able to conquer a lot of fears because of it. For example: fear of hights; im not scared of hights but I remember a few weeks ago being up on top of a big ‘ole, 2 story high haystack with my brother. There was another haystack the same size about 6 ft away ffrom the one we were standing on and so I decided to jump across, like why not right? So I jumped across without thinking or anything and then I wanted to jump back and I remember looking down at the ground and all the suddenly I started to think about it! I started thinking it through and then my stomach lurched and I thought “….naw…im not gonna jump, I don’t wanna get dead today”, And I remember thinking to myself “why am I doing this I already jumped it and I love hights whats wrong with me?!” So I forced myself to stop thinking and I ended up jumping it a few more times before my dad came over and told me to stop lol;) Another one of my greatest fears is the fear that people will not like me, im the type of person that wants everybody to like me and when someone doesn’t I…I just..die. This is one that I have a lot of trouble with and so far the only way ive been able to slightly get over it is with prayer and forcing myself to just stop thinking about it.;)
    (agh this got long!;)

    • Aha!! Yes, I watched River Monsters once at a sleepover. It really creeped me out . . . like I saw so many maimed men and creepy skeletons! It evoked a really creepy fascination in me though. I am terrified of lava too! I’ve heard stories about people who go to a supposedly dormant volcano and then KABOOM! Not so dormant anymore. ;) When I was little, my worst fear was I would be eaten by a T-Rex. They still scare me half to death! I couldn’t’ve lived with the dinasours, no way!
      Wow!! That is so cool that you actually have a real life story about “not thinking” and thus conquering your fears! Thanks so much for sharing. Somehow if we are the ones in control of our fears, they don’t scare us so much anymore.
      I am definitely a people pleaser too! I get so bugged when people don’t like me. I’m like what did I ever do to you?! I totally want to pull a Disney Channel on them and just walk up to them and demand they tell me what the problem is. But I don’t think that works in real life . . . so I just always stare at them and wish I knew what was going on inside of their head. I agree, this fear demands a lot of prayer! I guess we have to realize it doesn’t matter what other people think about us. It’s such a hard thing to do though! People are naturally people pleasers–that’s why everyone’s innate decision is to go with the flow! People who DON’T go with the flow are seen as weird.
      Thanks for the long comment!! Those always make my day. :)

  • kaleigh

    Fantastic article!!!! You have done so well in soccer that I don’t think anyone knows you are nervous before the game!!

    • Haha, really? That means A TON to me! :) I’ve been trying super hard to get better. It’s been so much fun being on defense with you and Arianna! At the beginning of the season I didn’t like defense but now I’m definitely thinking that’s more of my position . . . :)

      • kaleigh

        Yes, really! You have done a amazing job on defense. I have to remind my self often not to think about things coming up otherwise I do get afraid. :)

  • caroline milburn

    … Anyways, (shudders at the thought of guys)…
    great post Amanda :) loved the humor and the seriousness intertwined

    • Lol! At co-op I can’t tell you don’t like guys. :) You fit right in when you’re playing basketball!
      Yay! Glad you enjoyed it. :) I do like mixing the comicality with the seriousness . . . I should try to do that more often! Kind of makes it not sound like so much of a devotional or rant, huh?