Dave Lukas Chats with Akshay Nanavati
78: How to Conquer and Bend Fear To Your Will with the Founder of Fearvana, Akshay Nanavati
This week’s Misfit Entrepreneur is Akshay Nanavati. Akshay is a former Marine Corps veteran, adventurer, speaker, and author of the best-selling book Fearvana: The Revolutionary Science of How to Turn Fear into Health, Wealth, and Happiness.
The Dalai Lama said, “Fearvana inspires us to look beyond our own agonizing experiences and find the positive side of our lives..”
Through his work, Akshay has been featured on CNN, Fast Company, INC, Entrepreneur, Forbes, and almost all of the major news outlets.
Simply put, Akshay has faced and stood down fear and learned how to bend it to his will. Fear is something everyone faces and struggles with in some form or fashion, and for some time I have wanted to do a show where we dive deeply into facing our fears and overcoming them. When I met Akshay, I knew he was the guy to do it!
Akshay and the Fearvana movement really started in high school. He wasted a year of his life with drugs and lost two friends. It was the movie “Black Hawk Down” that triggered to get out of his selfish, meaningless life he was in. He went to join the Marines, but it too a year and half to get in because of blood disorder he has. He had to fight his way in and once in he started to learn how to push himself and started to explore other ways to do it. Outdoor extreme sports became his playground.
He was then sent to Iraq where his job was to clear IEDs. When he returned, he had trouble and was diagnosed with PTSD. He started drinking and go to the brink of suicide.
When he hit that low, he knew he had to change and learn to heal himself and learn to lead a meaningful life. He began to study it and learned how to manage and control his fear and harness it to his advantage. Fearvana and the business he has built around it came from this journey.
What is the one thing people should know about fear and how to use it to their advantage?
The single most important thing is that it is not a negative emotion. The reality is that we just have emotions – it is us who choose whether to view them as negative or not. You must build a positive relationship to suffering. If you can, you can do anything in life.
At the 7 min mark, Akshay answers the question, “What is it about fear that paralyzes people and makes us react the way we do to fear? What do we actually have to overcome?” You do not want to miss his answer…
“There is no such thing as irrational fear…”
Does fear masquerade itself as other things in our lives?
“The biggest thing that separates peak performers is that they don’t stress over stress”
Take us through the Fearvana process?
5 steps: The Unstoppable Warrior Formula
At the 18 min mark, we discuss how to get people to the action step quickly. Why is there a disconnect from when we recognize things to actually acting on them? Akshay gives a number of examples and what to do.
One key is to work your way up the ladder of fear. Put yourself in incremental levels fear as you progress.
What has surprised you to most in all of your work with fear?
How much everyone is suffering In their own way. We tend to think we are the exception and the “odd one out,” when in reality we all are suffering in some way. People should take comfort in that. Even the people you look up to have their own levels of suffering, but there is a gift in that when we learn to find it and embrace it.
At the 25 min mark, Akshay talks about the post fear process.
What is the most important habit and how do you break any habit at will?
At the 31 minute mark, Akshay talks about his routines and how he sets them up.
There has to be something you are truly afraid of??
What have you learned in becoming an entrepreneur that is important to share?
Other resources you used to develop the Fearvana Philosophy?
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