SCARED – DEEP DIVE
Play today's Going Deeper session below:
We often confuse worry with fear.
When I am defining fear here, I am referring to the acute stress response that occurs in response to a physical threat (such as the response that kept our ancestors from getting eaten by Saber Tooth Tigers for instance).
For many readers, the amount of times they will actually be in physical danger during the course of their lifetimes is limited to a handful of times.
For most, the sensation of being afraid is more often linked with an imagined psychological threat and with something that has not happened yet.
Examples are: you are afraid your lover will cheat on you and break your heart or you are afraid of being alone, never finding Mr./Mrs. Right, or not being good enough. These situations are more aptly categorized as worry or anxiety.
Now, whether there is an immediate physical threat or an imagined psychological threat, the physiological response with the body is the same.
Whether a person is running from a mugger on the street or a person is fearful of their spouse cheating on them, the system is on high alert. A cocktail of biochemical reactions results in an increased heart rate and blood pressure, elevated blood sugar levels, rapid breathing, sweating, and processes such as digestion shut down.
Remember the logic we've been talking about all week, if you haven't listened to the going deeper sections from day 15 and 16, please go back and do that.
By looking at our human experience from the level of natural law, we find it only works one way and by investigating the truth of this, it automatically exposes all the things that are not true.
Play around with and test out these implications for an inside-out understanding of being human. Write them in your journal. Post them in your home.
Fear (in the form of worry + anxiety) is not actually a reliable predictor of future events.
Worry doesn't actually keep us safe. We often do not think clearly when we are riddled with anxiety and thus override instinctive mechanisms, making poorer choices as a result. Fear doesn't keep us safe. Information and understanding, discernment/good judgement, adaptability, and gut instinct are things that actually keep us safe in regards to a situation or relationship. (Remember the story of the firefighter from week 1).
Fear (in the form of worry + anxiety) actually reflects the kindness of the human design.
Just as a thermostat alerts you if it is getting too hot or too cold, fear let's you know whether your current line of thinking and perceiving is helpful and responsive to the current reality, or if it is not. …After all, it is impossible to respond to something that isn't happening.
The future is a fiction.
Fear is not coming from the future event itself, rather from our thinking about the future event. Somehow, this makes it a little less scary because you can't feel anything that isn't thought of.
*Definition Reminder: When I use the word “thinking” — I am referring to the process that transforms formless energy into form ie. the processes within our body which enable us to interpret our world. In this way, much of our thinking is not under our conscious control, nor is it our fault.
- The sensation of being afraid is more often linked with an imagined psychological threat and with something that has not happened yet.
- Fear comes from thinking about the future, not from the future event itself.
- Grace in the lows and gratitude in the highs is the natural state of the human condition.