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Overcoming the Fear of Reaching Out

by Angelica V.

person wearing black watch

Reaching out is scary. It means getting outside of our comfort zone and letting down our guard. It means showing a side of ourselves that we don’t share very often and allowing others into our inner space. All of these things can be extremely frightening- and that’s completely understandable!

There are many reasons people are afraid to reach out. Perhaps you are afraid of rejection, worried that if you share that you won’t be loved or that you will be viewed as weird or strange for reaching out, or that you will be treated differently once you do. It may be that you are afraid of the response that you receive; you may fear that you won’t be taken seriously or that people won’t believe you once you share. Or maybe you just don’t feel safe sharing; there are a number of different reasons a person may not feel safe reaching out, among them because they think that they will be judged, or that they think their secrets won’t be kept safe.

No matter what your fears of reaching out are, one thing remains true: it’s IMPORTANT to reach out! Why?

In order to deal with your thoughts and feelings.

Harboring unresolved thoughts and feelings can feel like you are carrying a huge weight inside of you. Maya Angelou once said “There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside of you”, and nothing could be more true. Unless we confront our thoughts and feelings, they will continue to negatively affect our well-being.

To gain perspective.

Reaching out can help you gain a new perspective on life by helping you to sort out your emotions and achieve a greater sense of happiness. Sometimes all it takes is another opinion in order to put things in perspective and set our minds straight in order to uproot us from negative thinking patterns.

It improves your quality of life.

Sharing with others and reaching out makes you more enjoyable to be around! It makes you less preoccupied with other worries and more present with what’s going on around you. By reaching out, you also increase your sense of hope and belonging, and isn’t that something we could all use?

For all these reasons, it is imperative to reach out when you find that life is getting the best of you and you are feeling alone. That is when we need we need to seek out help the most–  when we are at our lowest. There are many ways to go about finding the help you need.

Talk to someone- ANYONE.

Even if you don’t know what you need or what that other person can offer you, it’s important that you at least find somebody to talk to. Getting your thoughts and emotions out in the open is the necessary part. If you find that the person you choose to talk to isn’t helpful, keep asking until you find someone who is- don’t give up on seeking out the support you need. 

Be okay with being vulnerable.

Remember that being vulnerable is not a sign of weakness. Feeling helpless, exhausted, depressed, or anxious is normal, and is nothing to be ashamed of. Being vulnerable allows you to be open to change since change requires honest self-analysis. Unless we allow sensitive truths to come to the surface, change won’t happen.

Know that you don’t have to talk about more serious issues if you’re not ready.

Sometimes you just need a conversation to distract yourself from what’s really going on, and that’s okay- just be aware that the sooner you let people know that you’re going through a hard time, the sooner you can get help.

Be honest.

If you want honest feedback and support, this requires honesty on your part as well. The people who listen to you want to do the best they can for you! This requires cooperation on your part though.

Hopefully, this article helped you in understanding your fears of reaching out a little better, and encouraged you to consider contacting the right people for help. If you ever need someone to talk to or want honest, non-judgmental conversation, we encourage you to reach out to our listeners at Listen.One at hi@listenone.com or via text message at 602-786-8840.

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