The Power of Fear

Personal growth work is a burgeoning industry with many forms of ‘expert’. There are the video wizards that extol daily meditations, the ladies who promise you can life the life you want (Danielle LaPorte, Gabby, etc.), doctors, spiritual teachers, shamans, energy healers and MORE. Sort of make your heads start to spin with all the options for living your best life now.

live sunOver the last handful of years that I’ve done my own personal investigating, I’ve noticed themes crop up across several channels and patterns that are created. Many people believe we are either operating from one of two places – Fear or Love. When we love, have an open heart and listen to our inner wisdom (or higher self, or soul, or spirit) life flows. When we operate from fear, shit happens – we break up with life partners, change jobs, experience financial stress. And while I embrace the concept and happily share helpful insight and timely quips to friends going through life muck, I’ve recently smacked into a big wall of fear that has me near paralyzed.

I’ve learned that it’s best to accept fear, note it, don’t judge it and just let it sit and move through you, but good lord am I uncomfortable. EXTREMELY uncomfortable in my own skin just now. After years of flowing and feeling really strong and happy and confident, I’ve found doubt, haziness and even terror creeping in as of late. It’s a new feeling and so I started doing some personal r&d to figure out where it’s coming from.

I’m afraid……

– to let my boyfriend move to the US (from the UK) because I feel that I am then the sole bread winner (at least in the short term) and somewhat responsible for his happiness AND the reason that he’s giving up a steady, lovely job and a comfortable home that he owns.

– that my financial ‘worth’ will never amount to much and that’s in direct conflict with my bf’s goals. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to afford a home and while it never bothered me before, suddenly I’m feeling a bit of a failure.

– that I don’t have any long term skill. As a lifetime make-it-work girl, I’ve cobbled together a job and life that I love, but it is suddenly feeling like it’s not ‘enough’.

Noting my terror, I am now doing what I always do – trying to create a quiet space to breathe, sitting quietly, reading my Eckhart/4 Agreements, googling for answers, reading my intentions.

I can’t say I’ve moved through it, but for this. very. moment. I am somewhat calmer. Check out these resources for fear – Danielle LaPorte’s worksheet highlighting The Diamond Approach where you basically ask yourself the same question over and over again. My neighbor recently did this to me (though, not sure if she was specifically using this technique) and it was SO effective and I was SO startled at my answer that I burst into tears.

Byron Katie does The Work, which is a fabulous way to talk yourself off a ledge and make calm choices around what emotions you are choosing to experience. It centers more around turmoil with a peer/partner friend, but I ended up doing a worksheet about something unrelated to my fear and it was helpful. I LOVE BYRON KATIE and she had this great practice around fear. I did a brief ‘report’ and it was somewhat helpful, mostly because I know I sound like a lunatic and it’s not ‘real’, but I can’t say my stomach has stopped hurting or my head stopped swirling. Next up, quiet meditation. I’m going to turn on some tibetan bowls, crank my headphones up and just let the 1,000 thoughts come to me so I can look at them, ask myself “is it true I need to be fearful?” and (hopefully) release it. WISH ME LUCK!!

Namaste

Dealing with Fear and Terror, from Byron Katie

Practice reporting events to yourself as if a circumstance you find yourself in were actually a news story and you were the roving reporter. Announce exactly what your surroundings are and what’s happening “on the scene” at that very moment.

Fear is always the result of an unquestioned past imagined as a future. 

If you’re afraid, find the core belief and ask yourself, “Is it true that I need to be fearful in this situation? What is actually happening right now, physically? Where is my body (hands, arms, feet, legs, head)? What do I see (trees, walls, windows, sky)?”

Impersonalizing our stories gives us an opportunity to look at circumstances more objectively and determine our responses to what life brings. Believing our untrue thoughts is a good way to scare ourselves to death.

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