Independently Happy

I take happiness seriously. So you don't have to.

7 Ways to Make Fear Fun

How much do you miss out on because of fear? Life will be much more fulfilling when you learn to overcome fear, so here are ways to make fear fun.

Scary image by Alexas_Fotos on Pixabay.com

Jump to the 7 Ways to Make Fear Fun.

It’s Halloween and Time for Fun

It’s time to enjoy things normal people should be afraid of. What if we did that all the time? But instead of vampires and roller coasters, what if we created fun out of new foods, new friends, and new books? What if we make fear fun?

I like scary movies and scary rides as much as anyone else, but those are more for pleasure than happiness. We enjoy those because of the release of dopamine and endorphins.[1]

I’m talking more about the more challenging things that don’t come with the dopamine rush that’s gone in a flash, but something you remember fondly years later. Something that starts a new good habit.

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A Real Ghost Story for Halloween

My wife and I went to New Orleans to celebrate our anniversary.

My friend in southern Louisiana keeps telling me that we should stop going to all the touristy stuff in the French Quarter, but the French Quarter is where we returned.

Photo of grave in e Lafayette Cemetary #1 in New Orleans

Make Fear Fun

One day we visited the Lafayette Cemetary #1.[2] That was pretty creepy, but the creepiness didn’t end there.

We returned to our hotel room after buying a gift for our kid. As we walked down the hall towards the elevator, we heard some ladies talking in the small dining area next to the elevator.

While waiting for the elevator, I glanced into the dining area to see who was talking. I couldn’t see anyone and assumed people I heard talking must be around the corner at a small table in the back of the room.

There were some ladies playing cards at a table the night before. I was curious and thought they might be back at the table for another night of cards, so I leaned around the corner. I just wanted to see who was talking.

The room was empty.

As soon as I leaned in enough to see the entire room, the talking stopped.

My wife saw my face, so she stepped forward to look in the room.

“Who was talking?”

“I don’t know.”

That was the highlight of our trip. Even after a day of wandering around a cemetery, the mysterious voices were the highlight of our trip.

Why is it that kind of fear is fun (at least for me), but I can’t overcome the fear of asking the store merchant for a cash discount?

When Fear Isn’t Fun

What’s the difference between fun fear and uncomfortable fear?

  • Getting hurt?
  • Looking foolish?
  • Being incorrect?
  • Getting fired?
  • Someone saying, “No?”

Most of the bad stuff we fear will never happen. Yet fear still paralyzes us from taking the actions that will lead to more happiness.

How to Make Fear Fun

How can we make fear fun? Start with easier, less scary tasks.

Begin With Entry-Level Scary

Here are a few suggestions that might seem a little out of your comfort zone, but they are manageable. They’re not scary. Just uncomfortable. They’re dipping your toes into the proverbial freezing water of a swimming pool instead of diving in. Many of these suggestions will even help others!

Speaking of “diving in,” I’m scared of diving: pool and sky.

Entry-level scary is like Goofy’s Barnstormer lever stuff. (ah, that video brings back such memories.) Enjoy this one a few times. Then we’ll move on to Seven Dwarf’s Mine Train and, eventually, Space Mountain level.

Let me know if you’re already comfortable with the following, and we’ll see about getting you on the accelerated program.

7 Ways To Make Fear Fun

  1. Comment on blog posts.
  2. Write a book review.
  3. Write a podcast review.
  4. Share a blog post.
  5. Take a cold shower.
  6. Try a new Restaurant.
  7. Try a new form of exercise.

Comment on Blog Posts

Photo of Marie Laveau mural in the French Quarter.

If this seems a little self-serving, that’s because it is.

If you comment on a blog post, then other people who read that blog post will likely read your comment.

What will they think?

They may think that your comment is dumb.

Well, maybe they’re dumb.

Just comment. It may be a little awkward at first but just do it. It will help the next uncomfortable thing you want to do seem less scary.

Just so it doesn’t seem too self-serving–and to give you a little more practice–here are a few other blog posts you can comment on:

Comments really help the blogger. They’re not as scary as they seem before you do it, but it will help the blogger, and you may enjoy the conversation.

It will help you too.

Write a Book Review

That’s right. Go back to Amazon or B&N and leave a review for a book you’ve read.

Yes. It is true. Someone is going to read your review. They might even be dumb enough to think that your review is dumb. I could be wrong, but I don’t think Amazon has a feature that allows people to review reviews.

If someone thinks your review is dumb, you may never know it.

It also really helps others. Leaving a review helps the people who read your review decide if they want to buy the book. It also helps the author by giving us social proof.

So hop on over to Amazon and review some of those books you’ve read.

Review a Podcast

The same applies here. Reviews are super helpful to podcasters.

If you haven’t ever listened to podcasts, then there is something else you can do that might be uncomfortable. Find and listen to some podcasts. Then leave some reviews. It’s the gift that keeps on giving.

How to Rate Podcasts


Btw, I hope to launch my podcast soon! If you still don’t see my podcast in the above video, contact me and ask me, “Why, Shayne? Why?!”

Share a Blog Post

Any of those blog posts above. Copy the URL and share them on your favorite social media platform. Email the link to a loved one. Bonus points for sharing this post!

Take a Cold Shower to Make Fear Fun

Cold showers are one of the best of entry-level scary things to try.

Yes, a cold shower is just as intimidating as jumping into the cold pool. It is an uncomfortable shock to the system.

It is so invigorating, though. And so healthy.

If you’ll turn that shower water down to cold and endure it just a few seconds, all sorts of vascular and metabolic benefits flood through your body.

And you get a little braver for the next scary thing.

Make Fear Fun by Trying a New Restaurant

For many, trying a new restaurant will seem pedestrian. For others, a new place to design might invoke panic. If trying a new restaurant sounds boring, then try an unusual cuisine, unusual to you, something you’ve never tried before.

If the idea of venturing somewhere you’re not comfortable terrifies you, then go to your usual place, but order something different.

“The discovery of a new dish confers more happiness on humanity than the discovery of a new star.”

– Jean Anthelme

 

Try a New Form of Exercise

If you already exercise, then it’s time to try something new. You don’t have to try anything you’ll hate. Furthermore, if you discover that you don’t like what you try, you don’t have to stick with it.

However, you might find that you like the new exercise that you try.

The point is not to do things you don’t like. The goal is to try something you haven’t tried before. If you enjoy the activity, then good for you! Stick with it and enjoy your new way to maintain your health and sanity. That’s a small success.

If you don’t like the new activity, you still experience success because you tried something new. You can happily abandon this exercise and gain another quick win by trying yet another novel activity. On your way to finding the exercise you enjoy most, you’ll grow a little more comfortable trying new things.

You’ll make fear fun.

Related Posts:

Question:

What new thing will you try today?

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References

[1] 5 Reasons We Enjoy Being Scared.

[2] Lafayette Cemetery #1.

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