Let’s start by reading that again. Fear exists in the mind and no where else. Thinking this through, what I realise is how something so intangible has the power to physically effect your way of being.
Sure, fear can be “seen” – in the way you act, how it feels in your body, your decisions, what you do and what you don’t know and perhaps the danger right in front of you – however fear itself is still a choice and resides within the mind.
So what you might be thinking? Well let me tell you – the gift of this message is that if it resides in your mind it means you have the power to change how you feel. Yes, it might not be easy to do – believe me I know this too! – however it is indeed within your control to choose how to feel.
There is another key message and that is worth spending a moment on. If you don’t acknowledge that you are choosing to experience the fear then the reality is you have given up your power. You are consciously saying that you have no power over your emotions and that in fact your emotions rule you.
Imagine a world where you run along after your emotions and they decide what to do? A far pleasing picture is one where you are integrated and that all voices are heard.
As a first step try taking back control and admit that you allow yourself to feel fear (and sometimes that is actually quite appropriate too!). Interesting point to pause and reflect on – its not that you shouldn’t feel free its more about consciously choosing what to feel than being pulled along.
Ok, so now what? How about trying out the following:
1. Think about a possible event that you have been anxious or fearful about.
2. Now pause and take notice of yourself. What are your thoughts and what physical sensations are you experiencing? In other words, where is the fear showing up in your body? Is your jaw clenched, your stomach tight, short of breathe?
3. Now take a moment to look around you and take in the beauty of what you see. Think about an experience that you have enjoyed or are looking forward to. Perhaps even try physically shaking off that fear! Or just consciously relaxing the areas that are tense.
4. Now pause again and notice the difference in your thoughts? How different is the physical sensations in your body?
5. Interestingly, you just “mindfully choose” to experience feelings, namely fear and joy.