Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Interview with author KRISTEN ULMER

The Art of Fear: Why Conquering Fear Won’t Work and What to do Instead

Kristen Ulmer is thought leader, fear specialist and former professional extreme athlete who radically challenges existing norms about fear. Named the best woman extreme skier in the world for 12 years and voted the North American most extreme woman athlete in all disciplines, Ulmer has spent a lifetime facing fear. She spent 15 years being labeled “fearless” by the outdoor industry, a designation she now realizes is not only impossible, but undesirable. Recognizing the deep misunderstanding we all have when it comes to the emotion of fear, Ulmer seeks to end our humanity-wide war against it, which will not only resolve many common, epidemic problems we face, but allow us the greatest chance to achieve our whole-mind potential. Her work has been featured in The Wall Street JournalThe New York TimesForbesNPRMoreOutside,and USA Today, to name but a few. Her book, The Art of Fear: Why Conquering Fear Won’t Work and What to Do Instead, will be released on June 13, 2017. Ulmer lives in Salt Lake City, Utah with her husband Kirk Jellum and their two savannah cats. For more info, please see: www.kristenulmer.com

1. What really inspired you to write your book, to force you from taking an idea or experience and conveying it into a book?    

What inspired me to write this book is this: as a mindset facilitator, I noticed most of my clients problems were being resolved once they healed their relationship with fear- meaning they took fear out of the basement and welcomed it into their lives as an honored and natural part of who they are. Yet everywhere I looked, were other facilitators, teachers, doctors and more, only seeking to help their clients put fear further and further in the basement. That action, while well intended, was harming a lot of folks. So I realized I needed to speak up about what I had learned, and speak up in a big way.    

2. What is it about and whom do you believe is your targeted reader?    

The Art of Fear addresses the cause of our fear and anxiety based problems- the cause being the current way we view and deal with fear. At this time, there exists a humanity wide belief that fear is a hindrance which must be fought, overcome, or rationalized away-- and that emotional intelligence is our ability to understand our emotions, and ultimately control them.   Weaving in my own personal story as someone who was celebrated in the media for being great at doing exactly that, I outline how my successful "conquering of fear" ability had unfortunate side effects, and caused alarming, long term problems for me. I found out the hard way, that that effort is entirely the wrong approach for dealing with this strong, and wildly misunderstood emotion. Today however, I realize "emotional intelligence" could instead be our ability to feel and express our emotions in a mature and creative way. That shift simply changes, everything.  I give very specific, and fun advice on how to make this transformation, and why that effort can solve many of our fear and anxiety based problems. I also write about how forging a healthy relationship with fear is also a path to living your most magnificent life.   My audience is anyone who struggles with under-performing, burn out, indecisiveness, insomnia, depression, excessive anxiety, excessive anger, excessive fear, reoccurring injury or injury that won't heal, illness that makes no sense, and more.    

3. What do you hope will be the everlasting thoughts for readers who finish your book? What should remain with them long after putting it down?  

That the way to deal with fear is the exact opposite of what they've ever been taught. And that if you start a fear practice, meaning you find a way to feel and honor your fear, that action is one of the best things you will ever do toward solving your problems, coming alive, expanding who you are, and going all the way with your time here on earth.   

4. What advice or words of wisdom do you have for fellow writers?    

Once you get started writing your book, if it was really meant to be (meaning you've figured out the right book to write) and you are on the right path, the process of writing it will become magical. And in my experience, easy.   For me, writing The Art of Fear became one of the best, most natural experiences of my life. Right up there with marrying my amazing husband. I even think it was better than the process of becoming a professional extreme skier. I wonder, too, if it feels about the same as growing, giving birth to, and raising a baby?    

5. What trends in the book world do you see and where do you think the book publishing industry is heading?    

There seems to be great support for authors who are seeking to challenge existing norms, or are willing to break up existing patterns. In today's rapidly changing world, thought leaders who are willing to step way outside of current belief systems, seem to be getting book contracts. But perhaps, has that always been the case?  

6. What great challenges did you have in writing your book?    

I am computer illiterate. There's that. Oh and I wrote the book while on the road. I wrote in Cuba, Hawaii, Mexico, Alaska, the Caribbean, at Burning Man. While that sounds ideal, I assure, it was not. I'm used to being a lady of leisure, so when all my friends were off having a blast I stayed in my hotel (or RV) typing away furiously with two fingers. While visiting Cuba even, I wrote 6 hours a day. Who does that?     

7. If people can only buy one book this month, why should it be yours?  

Here's the deal: Your relationship with fear... is the most important relationship of your life. If you don't have a healthy, conscious, considerate relationship with it, you don't have one with yourself. If you are at war with fear, you are at war with yourself.   But if you end that war, a war mind you that is unwinnable and being carried out in your unconscious mind and messing up your life in covert ways you often can't see, not only do so many of your problems become very manageable, and your life will start to make complete sense, but you will rise to a new level of whole mind potential.   Oh, and I tell some great stories too. It will be a crazy ride for you on at least four levels: a big picture understanding of why fear is showing up for humanity the way it is, my ridiculous, thought provoking, personal story of what it was like to be a professional extreme athlete, major ah ha moments about your own life, and wild analogies that drive everything home. Layers, baby, layers…  

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Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog 2017©. Born and raised in Brooklyn, now resides in Westchester. Named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs 

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