a neon sign that says fear eats the soul

Embracing your authentic self is a bold and courageous act – one worthy of a woman who wants to live her most dynamic, intriguing, vivacious, and authentic life – her DIVA Style life – and yet, it’s also one that can be derailed by past and current fears and anxieties.

The path to authenticity is paved with challenges, requiring us to confront and even befriend our deepest fears.

The journey toward being your true self is not just about removing the layers of false faces but about learning to walk hand-in-hand with fear. Let’s explore some strategies to boost your courage and foster a genuine connection with your authentic self, transforming fear from an adversary to an ally.

The Courage to Be Authentic

Being your true self is an act of bravery in a world that often pressures us to conform to unrealistic and unattainable external expectations. As women, especially, we are told that we’re not enough of one thing, and too much of something else.

We spend hours being exposed to unrealistic images of what we’re supposed to look like, conflicting reports of what our personalities are supposed to be like, and a never-ending parade of airbrushed and hyper-sexualized images that don’t reflect our personal or community realities.

Choosing to live authentically involves understanding and accepting who you are and having the courage to express your true self, even in the face of potential judgment or rejection.

The fears that are a part of this journey—fear of not being accepted, fear of judgment, and fear of vulnerability—are natural, yet they must be navigated with care and understanding.

The Importance of Embracing Fear

Why is it crucial to befriend fear on this journey of authenticity instead of turning away from it and refusing to use it in our favor?

Fear, when understood and approached correctly, can become a powerful motivator for growth and self-discovery. It prompts us to question, explore, and, ultimately, understand ourselves more deeply.

By embracing fear instead of hiding from it, we allow ourselves to live more fully, express our authentic truths without reservation, and make choices aligned with our deepest values and desires.

Remember, one definition of fear is “False Evidence Appearing Real.” Letting fear remain an enemy prevents you from using it to push yourself forward and keeps you living SMALLER than you have the right and the POWER to live.

Strategies for Befriending Fear

To transform fear into a companion on your journey to authenticity, consider adopting one or more of the following approaches:

  1. Embrace Uncertainty: Understand that not everything in life can be controlled, and every outcome cannot be known before you attempt to act. Accepting this can liberate you from the pressure to conform and allow you to embrace your true self freely. Stepping into the unknown activates your courage, pushing you beyond self-imposed limits and exercising your strength and coping skills.
  2. Illuminate Your Fears: Bring your fears into the open by journaling or sharing them with someone you trust. Identification and communication can strip fear of its power and make it manageable. Examining your fears will help to clear away the fog that makes them look larger than they are. Shine a light on them and watch THEM run for cover!
  3. Conduct Reality Checks: Challenge your worst-case scenarios by assessing their likelihood realistically. How likely IS IT that the worst possible outcome will actually occur? This helps to ground your fears and reinforce your courage with facts and rational thinking. You’ll start to see that the worst is usually farther away than we THINK it is and that we’re more ready to handle it than we believe we are.
  4. Decouple Your Identity from Fear: Recognize that your fears do not define you. They are temporary emotions and thoughts that you can observe without letting them dictate your actions or self-perceptions right now or in the future. Just because fear may have slowed your progress or stopped it in the past, you don’t have to continue to let fear win.
  5. Share Your Fears: Discussing your fears with supportive and positive friends or associates can provide new perspectives and clarity. A supportive listener can help you see beyond your fears and reinforce your courage to be authentic and to chase the genuine dreams that live in your heart.


Befriending fear is an essential step toward living authentically. It requires courage to face and accept your fears, but by doing so, you’ll be empowered to live a life true to yourself.

By understanding that fears are part of the human experience and not a reflection of your worth, you can separate your identity and reality from these anxieties. Remember, your fears do not define you; how you respond to them shapes your path to authenticity.

Embrace fear as a guide, not an obstacle, and let it lead you toward a more genuine, fulfilling life.

Journaling Prompts to Transform Anxiety into Authenticity

Use one or more of these prompts to start or deepen your personal journaling practice. Give yourself time to think about what the prompt brings up for you and explore your feelings on paper. If you need a journal, click HERE to see our available journals.

  1. What fears are holding me back from being my authentic self? Are they true or realistic? Why or why not?
  2. How can I reframe my fears to view them as opportunities for growth? What’s the first step I can take to reframe a fear that’s stopping me?
  3. In what ways have I allowed fear to dictate my choices, and what’s my next best step to change that?
  4. What steps can I take to accept uncertainty as part of my journey? When will I take that first step?
  5. How can sharing my fears with others help me to embrace my true self?

Affirmations To Embrace Your Fears Instead of Running from Them

Read the set of related affirmations below aloud. It’s important to your conscious and subconscious mind to hear the affirmations said in your own voice. Choose one or two of the affirmations from the set to start working with. You only need one or two affirmations, used consistently, to make a substantial change in your life.

Choose one affirmation that feels easy to you and choose another that generates resistance or disbelief. The idea is to practice extending your current self-imposed limits and encourage growth.

Say your chosen affirmation loud enough for your mind to hear your voice saying the words and take notice of how you feel as you begin and as you continue your practice. Repeat your chosen affirmation multiple times a day for at least 30 days and reinforce your affirmation by writing it in your journal.

You can change your life by beginning an affirmation practice – using one or two favorite affirmations over the course of 30 to 60 days can permanently change your mindset and your life.

  1. I embrace my fears as steps toward my authentic self and use my inner strength to overcome them.
  2. My courage grows as I face my fears with openness and honesty.
  3. I am not defined by my fears – I will focus on how I can overcome them.
  4. Every day, I choose authenticity over fear, and I am stronger for it.
  5. Sharing my fears lightens their load, empowering me to be true to myself.

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About the Author Dianne M Daniels

Born and raised in Detroit, Michigan, and currently residing in Norwich, Connecticut, Dianne M. Daniels' mission is to empower women 50+ to Amplify their Self-Confidence, Deepen their Self-Knowledge, Inspire Creativity, and Glide into the next phase of their lives with the Power of Journaling, Affirmations, and Assessments.

You can learn how to use these time-tested, proven practices to create and manifest the life you want (and deserve) to live.

Dianne is an ordained Unitarian Universalist Minister with a Master of Divinity degree from Starr King School for the Ministry. She's an avid reader, a lover of old houses (she renovated an 1850s vintage Greek Revival home with her family) and has been journaling since the age of 9.

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