By Tabasom Eblaghie, M.A.
Registered Clinical Counsellor
“I’m at a crossroads…”
Those are words I hear almost every day as a therapist.
There is a common denominator that seems to factor into most of our decisions when we reach a crossroad: FEAR.
Fear usually appears very quietly. It loves to visit us in the dark, and preys on our minds when everyone is asleep and it can attack in peace. It tells us about our insecurities, and shines a spotlight on how things will go wrong. And it does this with great certainty.
Fear is so confident. Not confident in us or our abilities, of course! It imprisons us, and instills doubt and loneliness into our lives.
Most people, when they reach that crossroads in their lives, KNOW what and how their life would be different. They’d love to move towards “the dream” – the best version of themselves, a new job, life in a new location, love and marriage, buying a home, selling and downsizing, having a child, etc. However, fear guides them into a mental discussion that simply wreaks havoc with one’s imagination.
I’m not referring here to legitimate Fear that definitely exists. I’m talking about Fear that plays with our insecurities, and knows nothing about the values we stand for as an individual – like Faith. Or Determination, Patience and Kindness. It loves to kill our dreams, hopes and visions for a better “me”.
It does not know about our Courageous Hearts, our Wise Minds and our Sharp Intuition. Somehow it dulls all of our senses, and shoves us into a corner with no place to go, and no option but paralysis.
Fear grows in secret. It usually invites other friends in with it: Self-doubt, Anxiety, Shame and Negative Comparison. It hates to be discussed as it loses power when its exposed and dissected. So it hides, very carefully behind the veil of these friends. It is a very tricky and crafty problem, and well versed in the game of hide and seek.
Letting go of Fear’s hand is possible. And inevitable. We all have let go of its hand at some point in our lives.
And take that leap of Faith.
Most people find that in order to let go of Fear, there are three ways to start the process:
1) As Fear grows in secret, by simply SPEAKING about Fear and its lies, Fear slowly starts to become the tiny little problem that it really is.
2) By FOCUSING on a virtue such as Determination, Faith, Courage and Hope, we can start to step out of the prison Fear created for us. We must turn towards our higher nature, values and strengths and remind ourselves of the virtues that can be invited in to fill the vacancy created by the exit of Fear. If you have Faith based values, prayer and turning to a Higher Power is a great assistant in grounding oneself, and providing us with much needed solace. My favourite prayer is listed below.
3) By ACTING against Fear’s bad advice, shrinks it to nothingness – much like the dried weeds from last year’s summer in a winter garden – powerless, useless and easily removable. This would involve doing the very thing that Fear tells us we cannot do.
There will be pitfalls and failures…but so what? What’s the worst that could happen? Is it worse than the life you are leading today?
Who can you speak with today, and let them know about Fear’s influence in your life?
What do you know you have to DO in order to let go of Fear’s rules in your life?
To make an appointment, please write Tabasom at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 604-889-3635.
“O God! Refresh and gladden my spirit. Purify my heart. Illumine my powers. I lay all my affairs in Thy hand. Thou art my Guide and my Refuge. I will no longer be sorrowful and grieved; I will be a happy and joyful being. O God! I will no longer be full of anxiety, nor will I let trouble harass me. I will not dwell on the unpleasant things of life.
O God! Thou art more friend to me than I am to myself. I dedicate myself to Thee, O Lord.:
– ‘Abdu’l-Baha, Baha’i Prayers