Fear affects us far more than we know. It stops us being true to ourselves
Most of us don’t realize that fear is the reason we are not being our authentic Self . Many of us would not even know that we have fear. In truth every unenlightened being has fear and it is controlling us. It is this fear that keeps us stuck in illness such as depression and anxiety.
Presence helps us see unhelpful patterns and suppressed fear
With presence comes (among many other benefits) the ability to see our unhelpful behavior patterns and our suppressed fear. Underneath unhelpful patterns is usually fear. This is the main reason many humans prefer to stick their head in the sand and keep suffering, rather than face themselves and aim for change. However, far greater peace comes from the willingness to acknowledge with acceptance what is there. We can heal by simply acknowledging and accepting fear. Also by honoring all the beautiful things we have to offer the world.
Common patterns, based in fear that don’t serve our healing
- People pleasing; tending to do what others expect or what society expects rather than truly listening to our needs. This erodes our inner being and causes anxiety or depression. Reason; fear of disapproval , fear of conflict, fear of not being liked or accepted. Answer; just welcome the fear, allow it to be there and start standing up for who you need to be, small steps are OK. Realize what you have to offer and put it out there.
- Victimhood or blaming; wanting to blame others for our issues rather than taking responsibility. We are entirely responsible for our own happiness. Wanting to blame others keeps us stuck. An example might be someone who has been sacked many times and every time chooses to blame the boss. This person will struggle to heal. Blaming is the reason many relationships fail. Reason; fear of facing the truth of ourselves, clinging to defending ego. Answer; be prepared to compassionately face your stuff at all times. This will set you free and is the way to a happy life.
- Resisting life or victimhood. Wanting to blame situations or our lives for our unhappiness. Again this keeps us stuck. Reason; fear of facing our own issues , fear of taking responsibility. Answer; Aim to accept everything that happens in life as an opportunity. Open up to the learning that every situation provides.
- High expectations of ourselves in the world and judgmental of ourselves if we don’t meet them. This can make us very driven in our pursuits with little ability to listen to our bodies. In this unending cycle life passes us by, the precious things going missing. The cycle of harsh self judgment can have more significant effects making us feel so bad about ourselves or so scared of failure that we become incapable of doing much at all. Reason; fear of not being good enough, fear of failure. Answer; just tune in and acknowledge those fears with loving acceptance. Acknowledge them daily and you will start to see you don’t have to be driven by them. All of us will fail and all of us will make mistakes, they are part of being human. Failure and mistakes are simply a learning opportunity they are never a reason to judge ourselves. Accept yourself exactly as you are right now, imperfections included. In truth you are a divine being of light. Unconditionally loved, perfect, safe, whole powerful. What we think we are is only a dream. You are completely perfect, with a little learning to do!!
- Avoidance; humans can find many ways to avoid facing themselves. Drinking, smoking, overeating, drugs, gaming, internet, sex, shopping, overworking, staying too busy, the list is endless. All as a means of avoiding facing our challenging emotions like fear, inadequacy or pain. Also as a means of avoiding facing our unhelpful patterns. Reason; fear of seeing the truth of ourselves. The mind ego prefers to see itself as OK it does not want to acknowledge issues, nor see beyond identity. However we can never move beyond what we don’t acknowledge so avoidance serves only to keep us stuck. Answer; be willing to face our emotions and our patterns. Not in a judgmental way, just with truth and loving acceptance. Acknowledging any pattern or emotion and having the courage to gently start to work on it is the way to freedom.
- Walling ourselves off from love, not willing to reach out for relationships. Another side to this may be oversensitivity to rejection. Reason; fear of rejection, fear of not being good enough, fear of abandonment. Answer; acknowledge the fears with acceptance and slowly start to reach out anyway. Take small steps , and know that rejection will only be painful for a short time. Just be very proud of yourself that you reached out. Be prepared to keep asking. We need to be willing to be rejected and still reach out. The alternative is to stay without love. Know that you have love to offer and you can allow yourself to receive it.
- Over sensitivity to criticism or to any perceived threat. Resulting in a tendency to become very defensive or attacking in return, making the situation much worse. Reason; fear of not being good enough, fear of failure, fear of defeat, fear of attack. Answer; just see those fears with acceptance regularly and notice the unhelpful behavior. Continued acknowledgment of the pattern and fear underneath it will help you move beyond it.
- People carrying; feeling the need to rescue or save others from their emotional distress. Tending to create a constant feeling of overwhelm or anxiety. Reason; fear of hurting another person, fear of disapproval, overdeveloped sense of responsibility. Answer; it is not our role to carry the emotional health of another adult human. That is theirs to look after. Listen to your body it will tell you that carrying another is too much. Look after yourself first, let the other learn from their own issues. In honoring your needs and pulling back you may dent their ego slightly but you will also be giving them the opportunity to truly heal.
- Wanting to wear the happy bubbly mask or the I’m coping mask, not allowing ourselves to be authentic and not allowing vulnerability. Reason; fear of disapproval, fear of non acceptance. Answer; acknowledge the fear with acceptance and slowly allow yourself to be more authentic. Welcome vulnerability. This will start to make you feel much more comfortable because you will be getting closer to who you are meant to be. People will respect you when you forget trying to please and just be yourself.
- Wanting to control or manipulate others or situations. This is a very quick way to wear ourselves out entirely and to alienate people around us. Reason; fear of failure , fear of loss of a relationship, fear of defeat, fear of not being good enough. Answer; acknowledge the pattern with loving acceptance and see the fears underneath it. Keep acknowledging and accepting the fears and the pattern as often as you can. Both will start to lessen.
- Creating drama recurrently in our lives. The Tibetan monks have a lovely saying; “It’s not such a big deal”. Everything in life is a learning opportunity. Why do we spend our time creating drama out of it and furthering our own suffering? If we are not able to be vulnerable and ask for support, we may create drama in order to get attention. It may be drama about our health or about any thing that comes along. Reason; fear of allowing our vulnerability, fear of asking for help, fear of rejection, fear of saying no, fear of truthfully facing our own neediness. Answer; tune in and lovingly acknowledge the love you are aching for. Take responsibility, ask for help when you need it, don’t take on too much, say no to things, reach out appropriately for support, be self nurturing.
- Dependency a tendency to depend on others for our happiness or emotional support. Feeling that others should be looking after us. Not taking responsibility for our own health. Reason; fear of seeing our issues or facing ourselves, fear of taking full responsibility, fear of being alone. Answer; realize that you are responsible for your own emotional health. Even your intimate partner is there to be a lovely companion but not to solve your issues. With compassion and gentleness, learn how to love and support yourself. The more independant you become, the more you build self esteem. Face your issues, be vulnerable, ask appropriately for support and accept if it cannot be given. You are divine love, all powerful and all capable.
We give away our power wanting approval
It’s amazing how ubiquitous the fear of not being acceptable or not being good enough is. However the minute we are trying to be something for another persons or society’s approval we are giving away our power. Ultimately we need to accept ourselves.
The greatest opportunity is to reverse this need.
Why don’t you stop worrying about whether or not people love you and just love them? Then it doesn’t matter what they think of you. You can just be love. Gary Renard
This is the way to wholeness
Feel the fear and do it anyway, there is a wellspring of love to share.
Fear is at the root of our unhelpful habits. Be willing to face fear with acceptance. Then focus on the love you have to offer . Every time we acknowledge our fear and the unhelpful pattern it creates, we get closer to moving beyond the pattern.
So recognizing our internal emotions and patterns, is the way to slowly move beyond them. This process will feel uncomfortable because we are letting go of our safety mechanisms. We need to feel the fear and do it anyway.
Work on presence, it naturally creates more acceptance. It also connects with the endless wellspring of love inside of us, that we can share.
More on emotions