Overcoming fears (in 120 seconds or less)

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First aired on the Points North (16/01/13)

Imagine being able to overcome your biggest fears and phobias without spending any money and only using two minutes of your time. That's the idea Dan Brooks is touting in his new book, Fear, Phobias, and Freedom: Discovering the Key to Living Fearlessly Free.

Brooks noticed his life wasn't moving forward and he started wondering why. He realized his fears of being disliked and criticized were holding him back.

Eager to know more, Brooks learned about Napoleon Hill's six basic fears

  • Fear of death.
  • Fear of poverty.
  • Fear of old age.
  • Fear of not being loved.
  • Fear of criticism.
  • Fear of ill health.

"[Fear] just builds up walls of resistance within us and it actually creates stress in our bodies," he told CBC's Points North. Stress causes the body to release chemicals, explained Brooks -- who is not a doctor. These chemicals impact our abilities, he said. Cortisol, for example, shuts down part of our brain's reasoning capabilities making it hard for us to think straight.

To help overcome his fears and stop feeling the stress associated with them, Brooks started using Gary Craig's emotional freedom techniques. During EFT, a person will tap nine different pressure points on their body, while repeating a mantra -- for only two minutes.

"Even though I have all this stress, I deeply and completely accept myself. Even though I have all this stress, I deeply and completely accept myself," he has Points North's Jason Turnbull repeat to lower his self-diagnosed stress levels, which that day hovered at 7/10.

The technique doesn't solve the source of the stress. It is meant to help people feel slightly better for some time.

"It's actually so that we're not worrying about something so much," explained Brooks. "There challenges that we have ... aren't really walls, they're just hurdles -- and we can get over any one of them that we want."

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