Fears. We all have them... probably more than we'd care to admit... and maybe that's part of the problem. Recognizing the fears that abate us is the first step to finding our way around the walls they erect. How is fear manifesting in your life? How is it getting in your way? I believe there are only two places to live from... we live from love or we live from fear. Anything negative that you experience involves fear in some shape or form. Not necessarily a fear of spiders... but a fear nonetheless. Fear of running out of time, fear of not being good enough, fear of messing up, fear of being uncomfortable, fear of not having control! The list is endless! Underlying every negative emotion that we experience is fear of some sort. What is fear and how do we get around it? A fear is simply this -- False Evidence that Appears Real. If you are anything like me, that statement alone is enough to start rattling the walls it erects.
Fear is an emotion. Emotions stem from thoughts... they are the responses we generate to our own patterns of thinking, whether or not we are conscious of those thoughts. Fear is the opposite of everything you are and presents opposition to everything you want. Opposition comes up in the form of anger, frustration, resistance, lack of confidence, lack of motivation or drive, dissatisfaction, self-sabotage or defeat, lashing out, drawing in-- it takes many forms both tangible and intangible. We lock ourselves into what is known out fear of the unknown. It really doesn't matter how comfortable or uncomfortable we currently are -- we are always telling ourselves that change would be ultimately less comfortable than whatever we are currently putting up with. Fear is seldom rational. We develop fears as a way to protect ourselves from perceived danger, but that danger is seldom as end-all as we believe it to be. And, yes, a fear may be the result of a traumatizing event and you may have had a reason to think you needed that fear to protect you at some point... but most fears that get in our way are no longer really relevant in the present moment.
The way to get around a fear is by questioning it. Never accept a fear as rational. Never accept any level of discomfort as more comfortable than the perceived change. The whole purpose of this blog is to help you train your brain to embrace more empowering ways of thinking. Yes, you can do that. Here's a way to start... When you find yourself feeling anxious or afraid ask yourself, what am I afraid of? And then, what do I think will happen if that happens? And what do I think will happen if THAT happens? What would happen if THAT happened? What is the worst thing that could be? Ruminate on that. Recognize that even if that worst thing happened, there would still be options from there. Then go back and look at your answers. Recognize any fallacies in that line of thinking and complete the thought, The TRUTH is...
I'm aware that this sounds fairly simple, and honestly, it IS. And if it's simple there is nothing to keep you from doing it! We accept our thoughts and fears without question on far too frequent a basis. We must be willing to question ourselves. Sometimes, we feel angry or frustrated and it doesn't really seem like a fear issue, but guess what... it is. All of these negative emotions are walls we erect to resist an outcome we feel anxious about. Is that False Evidence Appearing Real? You bet it is! Granted, some fears may involve larger consequences than others... but ultimately, none of those consequences will ever be the end of the world. Putting them into perspective, allows us to move through them. I have used these questions to address fears of success and fears of failure. It dos not matter how big or small the issue is, taking the time to consider where it comes from and recognizing how much we have blown it up allows us to change our perspective. Whatever that TRUTH is that you find, remember it! Post it somewhere where you can see it or choose some small reminder to keep it anchored in your daily routine. Use that truth to refute the fear anytime that it comes up. The more you do this, the more automatic it becomes. If fear is False Evidence Appearing Real, all you need to fight it is some new evidence!