Months ago, I was walking in the trail when I saw a beautiful deer. I was amazed. It’s not normal to see deer, and here it was, an alert, beautiful piece of art standing in front of me. It made me so happy that I decided to stand there so that I could watch it more. Few more movements when it didn’t recognize that it was being watched, however just as it came into the consciousness of being watched, it ran!
Hey! Hey! I am not gonna harm you! I didn’t move either. i just wanted to watch you. Please don’t run!
Ha! I wish it had listened to me, and faced it’s fear. May be we could be good friends, and I could bring home made food for it for my next trail visit! You missed a great opportunity my DEER!
Well, we do behave pretty similar when it comes to facing the fear. We panic, and the heart signals the mind to run! While it’s easy to run from an enemy, it gets nearly impossible to run from ‘Fear of Unknown’.
Fear of next doctor’s appointment.
Fear of talking to stranger.
Fear of speaking up in a meeting.
Fear of asking for a hike.
And the list is long enough to fill our day with virtual uncertainties, and jittery feelings. While fear has some important message to convey, fighting with the feeling makes us skip the learning, and we get stuck fighting our inner demons. Here are some of MY go-to-methods. I hope it helps you too:
- Invite them to tea: There are times things go out of control. You want to speak to someone, but you can’t. It’s something personal. An uncomfortable feeling runs in your body, and you want to run. It happens with me every time I have a doctor’s appointment. I don’t want share it with my husband as I feel like he is telling me same thing every month, and I still don’t get it. Lol. Anyone who lives with Cancer can tell you that how overcoming fear can be an ever-evolving process. I get up, I fall again, and the cycle continues. However, something I do many times is to ‘invite my fear to a tea party‘ where we chillax, and talk to each other about our needs. A warm cup of tea in my hand, and I sit in silence trying to sip in the fear, and ask myself, ‘What is something which is making me afraid?’ As we talk, ‘Fear‘ relaxes, loosen up, and so do I. It helps! At least till the time, it doesn’t knock me again!
- Talk to friends/family: When ‘YOU’ can’t be your best friend, look for support. It Give your fear a voice. Call someone. Speak up. It’s perfectly fine if you want to cry. Cry your heart out. Feel the ‘feeling‘ again, and vent out every insecurity which is making your mind a battleground. Most of the times the other person would push you harder to make you climb the wall of courage however, even if doesn’t happen, you will see the walls of your fear falling down. You can see the other side, which is not that scary, I promise! (And in case you have no one to talk to, send me an email. I can be your ‘Fear buddy’.)
- Meditate/Pray: Trust the divine, when you can’t trust yourself. In the last 3 years of my Cancer journey, there are days I have lost hope, I have cried infinitely, I wanted to jump from building, but I survived, and I am still standing strong. Something which helps me when nothing else does, is to remember the divine. I remember once I read in a book by ‘Wayne Dyer’ that he pulls an imaginary rope, and holds it whenever he feel down. The idea clicked me. While I cry, I just try to hold my cloth, or a bed sheet part, or anything and imagine that it’s God’s finger. Trust me, it works. It makes me calm. Somehow my inner child knows that she is being protected, and she is relaxed. There are many days when the only way I could sleep is by holding the pillow cover.
- Fake it till you make it: Alfred Adler developed this therapeutic practice in 1920 where he asked to ‘fake‘ the feeling, till you get used to it. While there are times you just want to surrender to fear, ‘try’ putting a courageous face once. Every time I visit Cancer hospital, my inner child cries like anything. I want to run, scream, and do whatever could be done to avoid the visit. But, alas! I can’t. And therefore, I try to put a courageous face. I smile a lot. I talk a lot. To every receptionist, every nurse, every volunteer.
Hey! I din’t feel any pinching while you took out blood. You know your job so well! Thank you!
I like your watch. Where did you get this from?
Hey Nicole, what’s the plan for Halloween? I am sure your son would be pretty excited.
Funny enough, now I know many staff from the hospital. Sometimes even when we don’t interact, I get a warm ‘I KNOW YOU‘ smile. No, No! I am not a courageous person, even though I am practicing this for last 3 years, but I surely have made some difference in my thought process, and in the lives of many people.
How do you get yourself to a point of believing? Start make-believing. Be like a child, and make-believe. Act as if you have it already. As you make-believe, you will begin to believe you have received.– Rhona Byrne
- Visualize: Have you tried visualization? It works! I remember when i had to teach Yoga in my building, I was scared like anything, I had never faced and talked to 10-15 people together, and then I thought of trying to visualize. And I swear, the actual experience turned out to be better! There are times you are afraid of a meeting, presentation, or you have a meeting with your manager. You want to give your best! Try visualization. Sit for 5-7 minutes. Imagine the scenario. How are you dressed, what are you talking about. Imagine yourself being confident, and talking about your points in a clear and concise way. And at the end imagine that the other person is happy with the conversation, and you too are proud of how you handled the situation. Try doing to as many times as you can. May be before going to bed, or just rising from bed. Tell me how it goes. 🙂 I can assure you that it’s gonna help you!
- Move your ass: This is nothing new I am gonna talk about. ‘Move you body’ buddy. Exercise releases hormones which makes your body relax. It helps clear the fog of your mind, so that you can see a clear path ahead, and know which way to proceed. Doesn’t matter if it is as simple as skipping, running or 15 minutes of Yoga. It will help you snap out to fear feedback loop.
Being afraid doesn’t make you inadequate. And I have never met anyone who is not afraid of ‘nothing‘. But everyone finds his/her way of dealing it. I see thousand faces of fear every month when I visit Hospital. Some look scared, while some hide it behind their face, some will accompany it to the prayer room, while some decide to cry. And trust me, every form is beautiful in it’s own ways.
Fear is one of biggest enemy one can have! It’s lying there in a dormant state. Always! When triggered, it comes in various shapes, size, people, events, and experiences. But if you see clearly, it is trying to make you a better person. Either you face or surrender to it, both ways the universe is teaching you the best of it’s lessons, ‘Face it, even if you hate it or Let go of what you can’t control.’
Universe always gives you more than you would have asked for. If not a gift, may be a lesson, which is going to help you. Always!
What do YOU do to befriend your fear? Share in comments 🙂
May you face your fears, and spread courage, and positivity,