Everyone feels unnecessary fear sometimes.
Some people feel it almost constantly.
When you feel this way, you know you are
scaring yourself mentally
and that you need to stop it.
But stopping it can be difficult.
How can you make it easier to stop?
You can start SAFING YOURSELF
instead of scaring yourself!
Whenever you feel any kind of scare the FIRST thing to do is
use your senses (eyes & ears & nose, etc.!)
to notice if there is anything RIGHT NOW
in the real world that is scary!
If there’s something scary in your world at that moment,
do whatever it takes to get safe.
(The only healthy reason for feeling scare
is to remind us to protect ourselves when we need it!)
If your senses don’t pick up any real threat,
then there is no real threat. Period.
You are only scaring yourself unnecessarily
through your thoughts.
Before you can start “safing yourself,” you need to
identify the scary theory you’ve been using to scare yourself.
The scary theory we will use as our example is:
“I would die of embarrassment
if he said anything bad about me!”
In our example, notice the phrase: “I would DIE”
Believe it or not, when you look deep enough you will find that
all fear has a subconscious connection to a fear of death.
This fear is always about someone dying
– either ourselves or someone we think we need to survive.
It can help a lot to recognize this deeper “fear of death”
that’s behind our irrational fears.
Sometimes you won’t be able to identify the “death fear”
that your scary theory is connected to,
but it’s still wise to remember that there is such a fear beneath the surface.
Knowing this can help you to realize why your fear is so strong.
Once you know the scary theory you’ve been using,
you can start to actually safe yourself.
Use all three of the following methods until you overcome your fear.
Do it often enough so that some day all unnecessary fear will be gone!
One good way to safe yourself is to
say the opposite of the thought you are using to scare yourself,
and notice how much truth there is to the statement.
In our example, the opposites would be:
“He will not say something bad about me,” and,
“I won’t die of embarrassment even if he does say something bad about me”
Notice the degree to which the opposite statements are true or likely.
For instance, the degree to which you can expect him
to say something bad about you today might be 25%….
and, of course, the degree to which you can be sure
you will never die from being embarrassed is 100%…!
Another way to safe yourself is to ask:
“Do I have ways of subconsciously inviting the very thing I fear?”
Someone who is afraid of embarrassment
might blush or have an embarrassed look as soon as their fear begins.
And if there is someone around them who is cruel enough to want to embarrass them,
these behaviors send out the message that they are “ripe targets” for embarrassment.
Once you find out what you do that sometimes invites the very thing you fear,
you can learn how to stop it or do it far less often –
and gain confidence at handling the very situations that scare you.
In all scare situations, admit to yourself what your worst fear is.
Then decide what you would actually do if this worst fear really did come true.
For instance, if someone keeps embarrassing you
even though you’ve told them to stop it
you might decide to make some new friends
and stop being around such a cruel person!
Each of these three ways of safing yourself
require more than a little personal insight.
The best way I know of to find the insight you have is to ask yourself:
“What would I have wanted as a small child if this kind of thing was going on?”
Then do whatever it takes (that is 100% safe)
to get what you wanted back then!