Everyone has been through changes in their lives. Sometimes it’s easy to deal with and other times not, but the fear of change can have a negative and disruptive impact on us.
It can stop us from doing something great today because we fear the consequences of tomorrow.
How do you know what your fears are?
I was born and raised in Brazil. In 2015, aged 25, I moved to England and at that time it was the best thing I had ever experienced in life.
Even though I was far from my family and friends, my dogs… my everything in Brazil, it felt great to be discovering new cultures, people and places. The moment I returned home, I started dreaming of the day I would be able to have another similar experience.
Four years later it happened: I was offered a job in Portugal. However, fate has a funny way of making your dreams a reality. The thing I had spent years working towards has proven to be one of the most challenging phases of my life.
This time, in order to pursue my dreams, I would have to leave everyone and everything behind. I had to juggle the advantages of an enticing job offer in Europe against everything I know and love back home in Brazil. My friends, my family and my wife.
Could I? Dare I?
I did, and this time the stakes were higher. In the meantime I had got married, so I feared losing someone I love, I feared missing important moments in my friends’ lives, I feared not being able to adapt to a new country, a new culture, a new job, a new market. I feared everything. The fear of change.
I’ve been struggling with all of this up until now. But suddenly things have changed. Suddenly I no longer feel fear, I actually feel like I’m winning.
How did I overcome my fear of change?
Sport has proven to be my main comfort. Running has a cathartic, therapeutic effect on me and serves as my meditation. I realized that when I am running, my fears take a backseat and for a while the only thing I focus on is to get better, a better runner and a better person. After a while, I learned that if I can forget something for a moment, I can forget it forever. It’s just a mindset.
Obviously, I can’t play on my own. You need teammates to win a match, score a goal, make an assist. For 90 minutes, I am part of something. I am not alone and that feels great. And It makes me understand how to lose.
I rise up to the challenge. Again, and again.
When I lose, I want a rematch. When I see a better player than me, I want to mark him, beat him. It is always like that. Now, when I fear something or when I see changes coming, I don’t want to avoid it anymore, I want to go through it. And become better.
This is the mentality I’m trying to adopt when beating my fear of change. It is just another race to run. Just another football match. I know how to win. I have done it before.