There’s something that prevents so many people from taking action, from creating the lives of their dreams, and from really living their best life.


It’s that feeling of apprehension and fear, and it kind of freezes you. 

That feeling is a showstopper for so many people. 

When dealing with it for my clients, we find that the number one problem it causes is it stops them from taking action. This is true for many people.

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And when you’re stopped in your tracks, stopped from taking any action and doing things in life, it means that you stop living. 

It’s a destroyer of dreams that so many people struggle with. 

And they have no idea what to do, or what’s even going on. 

This relates to performance in life.

It relates to how to get the best out of your energy, your time, your life, and your day, and how to get the best out of what you do in your business, and your home.

This affects every area of life. 

When it comes to anxiety, all of the people I’ve worked with get stuck and it stops them from doing what they want to do in life. 

Whenever I ask my clients, email subscribers, or contacts what stops them from doing what they want to do in life, it’s this fear or anxiety. 

So we must understand what’s going on because most people don’t actually understand.

In this article, I want to share exactly what I would share with one of my clients.

The number one thing is to help you to understand what’s happening. 

If you can realise what’s actually happening, then it gives you the power to do something about it. 

For the most part, most people don’t actually realise what’s going on, even specialists in the psychology field.


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So many people are struggling with this, even though they’re helping other people. 

That’s proof that it’s a human problem. 

It’s like the doctor getting ill.

Just because you’re a doctor, doesn’t mean you won’t fall ill. So it’s the same thing. 

Now, you don’t need to beat yourself up or give yourself a hard time just because you’re the specialist and you struggle with it, but there’s a huge misunderstanding when it comes to this subject.

And because there’s such a misunderstanding many people, even the specialists remain stuck in this situation. 

So I’ll give you an insight into what’s possibly causing it.

Understanding changes lives. Understanding changes everything. 

In the Quran, the very first Revelation was ‘Read.’


Because when you understand, it changes the way you perceive reality, and the way you perceive the world, and that change in perception has a knock-on effect.

It’s like a domino effect. 

It’ll go from your perception and your understanding, all the way through to actions and your results. 

And ultimately, you can’t change what you don’t understand. You can’t change what you don’t even see. 

You’ve got to see it. That’s what we’re going to focus on. 

Here’s a story for you. 

It’s a fictional character, but a very real situation. You’ll probably resonate with it.

It’s not a real person, but the example will demonstrate what’s going on. 


Here’s Zahra’s story.

Zahra is a professional with responsibilities, she’s got her family, and her job, and she has a team that she works with. 

She has to show up and lead meetings and presentations at times. 

This was never a problem for her before. But something happened. And she started getting troubled by these feelings.

She didn’t understand what was going on. 

Now, there was never a problem until she started to feel a surge going up from her chest to her neck.

She felt this warm, fuzzy feeling, but not a nice one. 

This would happen every time she had to do a presentation or she had to communicate with some people.

It’s like her throat would dry up, she’d get all hot and bothered, and her heart would race. She would get butterflies in her stomach. 

She would feel stressed out. 

In the beginning, it happened infrequently, but then it started to increase. And it happened over and over again. And she couldn’t understand what was causing it. 

Imagine it. This is the problem that she would face if this occurs every time she has a meeting, or has to do some sort of presentation.

Or even when she’s getting together at a big family gathering.

It’s her family, but she’s getting all these physical reactions in her body. And she starts to feel very self-conscious.

These fears overtake her and she doesn’t quite understand what’s happening. 

But ultimately, the effect of it is that it leads her to shy away from family meetings or gatherings.

Shying away from or committing to do anything. It means that she’s going to be in the spotlight, where she feels like all eyes are on her. 

So anything where she’s going to have to face even one person or a group of people, especially a group of people.

This is often referred to as social anxiety.

Social anxiety could be within your own family. It doesn’t have to be outside. 

The thing is, she has these challenges and you can imagine how this will hit her confidence. 

She’ll start to believe that there’s something wrong. 

The worst thing is that she doesn’t know what to do. And if she goes to a specialist, maybe she’d go to the doctor’s, and she will probably be prescribed something to calm her nerves and maybe even go to some talk therapy. 

All of that is like a coping mechanism. 

But what happens to her is that over some time, this knocks her confidence and she suffers from fatigue.

She stays away from opportunities when they arise. 

Any opportunities that come along, she will pass them up even though she’s more than competent in taking up these opportunities.

The whole reason these opportunities come up is because she is competent. If you look at her CV, if you look at her resume, you’re going to find that she’s got loads of experience.

She’s got the qualifications and all of the stuff that she needs. 

But because of the situation, she shies away from opportunities. 

Several things cause this. There are two very common reasons why this happens. 

The first one is her past which is playing on her mind. That causes her problems. 

Very often, we’re challenged with the past. 

Some might call this bad memories. Some might call this post-traumatic stress. 

You might even get diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder.

Either way, you’ll be affected by what’s going through your mind, about what you previously experienced. 

If you’re affected by your previous experiences, and you’re constantly playing these over and over again in your mind.

You’re thinking about it a lot, you’re ruminating on this, then this will induce stress and fear.

Out of the blue, whenever you’re thinking about it, you will start to feel these anxious feelings. 

This is very often a chronic cause of stress. 

All the people that I’ve dealt with when it comes to this subject, so often they struggle with the past and they’re playing it over and over again in their minds. 

They’re ruminating on these occurrences, and they find it difficult to let go. 

The mind just accepts it as reality. Then you get the feelings of stress and being on edge.

And when you’re ruminating a lot on these thoughts, it will cause an anxious feeling and that’s the feeling of fear.

It’s the fear of something that happened in the past recurring. That fear keeps you in a state of constant stress. 

So that’s one of the key things that causes people’s anxiety.

One of the key reasons is the replaying of old memories, or whatever happened in the past. The stuff that you’ve not been able to let go of. 

For someone like Zahra, he’s a professional, and it could very well be something that may have happened in her workplace. 

Like, she made a mistake while giving a presentation. 

And someone laughed. And in her mind, she went crazy with thoughts. 

She went crazy with thoughts about these people looking at her and what they were thinking about her.

And she feels this surge of emotions. Embarrassed, ashamed, like she’s not good enough. It really hits her. 

When that happens, it almost anchors those thoughts, because there’s a very strong emotion that she’s feeling in the moment. 

If she keeps on replaying this over and over again in her mind, then that will recurringly create the same feelings, and when she goes to work or a social environment she’s going to have a fear of that happening again. 

That causes anxiety. This example is one possibility. 

The second possible scenario causing this type of stress is that of the future. 

So many people are in a constant state of projecting the future of their lives.

Some of this is planned, they plan huge futures and they have this projection of what the future is going to be like. 

And this projection wouldn’t matter if it was a nice one. 

But what tends to happen is that we project the worst-case scenarios.

“What if I make a mistake? What if this happens, what if that doesn’t happen?” 

We create these horrific scenarios about what’s going to happen in the future. 

And you can guess when you do that, it induces fear and uncertainty and naturally, you’re going to become stressed. 

The more you ruminate on those thoughts and anticipate this happening, it will become debilitating and it will stop you in your tracks. 

As a result of these constant ruminations of thoughts, you become anxious. You become fearful of what you anticipate.

This is a very common situation. 

I don’t just talk about this from my experience with my clients. 

I talk about this from my own experience. 

A part of my whole psychology journey is the fact that I struggled with this for many years. 

So I know exactly what you could be feeling when you’re having those moments, and how it changes your behaviour.

When it happened to me, it completely changed my behaviour.

I went from being this outgoing, confident person to becoming an introvert. 

A person who didn’t want to be the centre of attention and in the social settings.

So the story of Zara, I understand that completely. 

I resonate with that story more than anything. I know it’s very real. 

This happens. If you’ve had anxiety, then know for sure, there’s always a solution.

You may have looked everywhere but I guarantee there is a solution.

The primary thing to do is to first understand where it’s possibly coming from. This is the key. 

So you have this future projection and it’s often very vivid and very real in your mind. 

It scares a person into a complete stupor. Many people have this problem.

It’s so common that it’s unreal.

Anxiety in our times, especially in this time, is such a big thing. 

But we are the creators of these horrible futures. We scare ourselves into a complete mental freeze. 

And when that happens, you refrain from taking action.

It affects your energy levels, you start to feel fatigued all of a sudden.

And it’s constant fatigue.

The fatigue of overthinking, the fatigue of what’s going to happen, and in being in constant stress because your body is not built to be in a constant state of stress.

When you’re in a constant state of stress over a long time, it zaps your energy and before you know it, not only are you passing up on opportunities, but you’re actually not doing things because you don’t feel like you have the energy to do things. 

And you get stressed out really quickly.

You get ratty and agitated, and as a result of that, you want to be alone because you don’t want to misbehave with people.

So you start to isolate yourself from people. And then you feel lonely.

You start to feel lonely, even though there are people around you and the worst thing about it is that people don’t understand what’s going on with you. 

It’s a really difficult situation to be in. And some people get so bad that they lock themselves away because of it. 

But I want to give you an example. This whole thing, freezing and inaction and being stuck. 

You’ve heard of the old fight or flight.

When you get into a fearful situation, you get ready for a fight, or you run for it.

I want to add another dimension to this.


When you’re driving down a country lane, at nighttime, and a deer crosses the road as you’re driving.

The deer sees your car headlights, and it just freezes in bewilderment.

It doesn’t move, it doesn’t run, no fight or flight response, it just freezes. 

Because it’s focused on your headlights, it’s probably scared, paralysed with fear actually and it doesn’t move. 

That’s what we do. When you have anxiety it’s like you’ve been overtaken by the deer effect. 

We feel like we’re in the dark. We see what scares us and we freeze. 

You feel like you’re in the dark, but you’re actually not in the dark, you can put the light on if it’s nighttime.

You feel scared. 

Because you feel like you’re in the dark and because you feel like something could possibly go wrong. 

If you look around, you’re okay. It’s not really happening. 

We play the scenarios of the future or the past. It creates this deer effect, we get scared, and we stop. 

We freeze into inaction. We don’t do anything.

Obviously, if you’re not taking action and not doing the stuff that you should be doing, then you’re not creating anything in life.

You’re not progressing. And as a result, you feel stuck, you feel upset. 

My advice is it would be wise to let go of whatever’s going through your mind.

Don’t be the deer. You are truly powerful. 


Your mind is so powerful. Look at the scenarios it creates in your life. 

Just like it creates the negative, it can create the positive. Your mind is truly powerful. You can direct and control your life as you choose. 

That’s the key. You’ve got to choose your way out of this.

It’s a little bit deep, I know but understand what I’m sharing with you and have a look at your own life and see if that’s what’s going on for you. 

You just need to understand because that will make all the difference. 

There’s always a solution. 

I know it’s debilitating but the most powerful key to solving this problem is through understanding it and taking action to change it. 

You can do this.

Your mind is under your control. Your life is within your sphere of control.

You have that power. The power of choice gives you everything. 

Don’t allow your thoughts to conquer you or to render you into this frozen mode, the deer mode, don’t do that. 

Focus on your thinking. Because it’s all being created through our minds, our whole body, everything, it’s all being created through that. 

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About the Author: Abdul Shahid – Master Coach Trainer & Therapist of Professional Life Coaches, pioneering The Science of the Nafs Psychology model for healing, transformation and peak performance. Specialist in Mind health, wealth and mastery using this Quran and sunnah based Spiritual Psychology.