You have probably heard by now the analogy of the fear and courage wolves. The Native American tale tells of a negative and persistent wolf which represents the mind of a person. This wolf feeds on fear, is hungry for drama, catastrophizes, and has incessant negative self-talk.
But there is also a second, less needy wolf, which is said to reside in the heart. This one is positive, compassionate and focused on serving others.
The fear wolf fights for attention and demands dominance. The courage wolf desires simply to be noticed, seeking some esteem-building food in the form of positive self-talk. According to the legend, the one that ultimately controls your destiny is the one you feed the most.
If you constantly feed fear by thinking about the could-haves, the should-haves, the would-haves, and the can’ts—if you allow negative beliefs, attitudes, and conditioned behavior from whatever drama you experienced or stories you adopted—then the fear wolf wins. It gets stronger and stronger while the courage wolf is left hungry for attention and unable to fight back.
However, you can stare that fear wolf down and weaken it by refusing to feed it any longer. Start to deprive it of negative self-talk and programmed reactions. Then, feed the courage wolf a steady diet of positive food. In this way, your heart will guide your mind as they cooperate in partnership.
I have coached many good people to stare down their fear wolves and develop the courage for incredible leadership. I had to lead by example and send my own fear wolf into the desert. Negativity is the norm in our culture, so this story of the wolves is more than a nice blog post. It is imperative to overcome the fear wolf in order to tap into full potential and live courageously. Freedom lies behind the fear wolf.
My own journey to freedom was painful and long. My hope is that if you employ this crucial skill, as well as the other lessons I unveil in my blog posts, you will find freedom much faster. You won’t have to be a SEAL and do twenty years of therapy before finding deep authenticity. You will tap into the innate potential hidden by unseen grooves of negative conditioning. You will be able to build outstanding teams by leading with compassion and creativity. You will be one of the heart-centered, world-centric warriors leading humanity toward a more positive future.
So I encourage you to make “stare down the fear wolf” a daily mantra. It will inspire you to get out of your head and into your heart, especially when the fear wolf growls. This practice will allow you to move beyond your limitations to achieve so much more.
This work is easier said than done. But you can trust me on this: it is 100 percent worth it.
Your courage wolf is waiting for you to show up. How will you feed it?