This ‘shelter in place’ experience catalyzed my decision to start distributing my newsletter again. I hope that its content proves relevant to you. Your patronage is precious to me. I am so grateful for you being a part of my world.
Concurrently, I have given my website and my Facebook presence an uplift so…..drum roll please…..check out my newly bright and shiny virtual digs! Now you can make appointments with me online! All appointments made online are discounted 30% for the month of May! I look forward to working with you soon.
If you’d like to submit a testimonial, please send one to me! If you have any questions, feel free to reach out as well.
Building an Amicable Relationship with Fear – Week 1
These past weeks’ events have really floored me. I am sure that you’ve seen a lot of information about how life WILL never be the same again.
If one takes a curious investigative approach, that adamant stance re-frames to “life COULD never be the same again.” When I am able to open my adamant stance into option, then my heart can sing and
inspiration can shine from a fear-filled experience.
These next few newsletters are a series addressing how each of us can build an amicable relationship with fear. I will take and re-articulate from the free eBook I have available via my website: 10 Tips for Managing Your Strong Emotions. So, let’s jump right in!
Wow! What a lot of collective energy I have been managing these past couple of months. Has that been your experience too? The report I hear most often is that the main emotion filling the collective field has been fear. If all this energy has the emotional tag of fear:
How are you choosing to respond to fear when it brushes up against your personal boundary?
First and foremost, understand that you have the choice of reacting OR responding to the experience of fear.
Respond, Rather than React
What if when fear takes your breath away, you have the wherewithal to simply pay attention to your breath? The skill set of mindful breathing allows you the space to discover option of response.
Responding rather than reacting is an important skill set to learn.
Reacting is that knee jerk action you do without taking the few moments needed for discernment. Reaction is actually a life-saving tool that is hardwired into you. It belongs to the part of us that is called “survival intuition.” If the house is literally falling down around you or there is a literal tidal wave coming your way, it is really important to have the life skill of reactivity readily available. You may have heard this tool called “fight, flight or freeze,” and it is our instinctual action in response to danger.
The challenge we all face, though, is that we are only supposed to react in this manner when there is some literal danger that is threatening us. In our super stressed world, we get to see tidal waves happening in real time, even though the disaster is happening thousands of miles away. Our “fight, flight or freeze” physiology kicks in like the literal disaster is happening in our own back yard. When you add years of this happening every day in your world, and then add the years of it happening every day to your loved ones, you end up with your physiology in a constant reactive mode; so much so that you don’t even know that you are in that reactive “soup” all the time.
It is important to understand that most of the time when fear hits, it is not of the “survival intuition” variety. It is more of the anxiety variety which, unfortunately, prompts the body to have the same physiological response making your nervous system react as if the Covid-19 virus has entered your field and you and yours are surely going to die NOW.
So, when fear enters your boundaries, you can give yourself the valid option of responding to the information that has either inspired your rising panic, the fear you have picked up from others, or from the media with,
“I will take this all into consideration and trust that I will respond appropriately.”
What we have all been dealing with in this pandemic event is a combination of survival fear and anxiety fear. This virus IS life threatening; AND….is it truly life threatening to you right now? If it is, please react in a way that protects you and yours. Follow the advice from the sources you have that are informational rather than dramatically articulated.
But if you are not imminently affected, tune into your internal landscape and ask the fear to give you the information you need to take the next step. For example: it might mean for you to check in with the governmental websites on a regular basis so you get the information you need to know so you can respond to that rather than the hearsay that comes from most social media or the news media that courts your fear response.
I get so delighted with interpreting body metaphor. Fear ‘takes my breath away’ is a wonderful example. If fear takes your breath away, then the simple ‘marching orders’ can be to pay attention to your breath.
When I experience fear, it can take my breath away. This has led me to study meditation. It took a good 3 years of consistent practice, and I now experience so much more space between reacting and responding when fear or other intense emotions are heading my way.
I love, love, the meditation app from HeadSpace.com. Andy’s voice is wonderful to listen to. Andy and his program empowered me to embrace that meditating for 5 minutes a day is good enough. Any mindfulness practice will work. The key is consistency with compassion and intention. If you can do this, it will really support you cultivating responding rather than reacting.