“If we learn how to recognize what fear can teach us about ourselves and what we value, then we can use it as a tool to obtain greater meaning, purpose, and fulfilment in our lives. We can use fear to get to the best of us.”

Jay Shetty, Think Like A Monk

Tuesday, 3 August 2021

Let Go…

Our lives, at the moment, are filled with uncertainty, negativity and fear. Living with these emotions has a marked effect on our life and can lead to all sorts of other challenges like anxiety and depression, feeling overwhelmed, feeling hurt and many more.

Negativity is everywhere. There is no escape. In Shetty’s words, “Every day we are assaulted by negativity”. Negativity forms part of our life subconsciously. We are easily drawn into a negative state of mind by listening to the news, surrounding ourselves with gossip mongers, and comparing ourselves to others. Negativity comes from within. If we feel that our loved ones or we are being threatened in any way, negativity and fear raise their ugly heads. The worst part about negativity and fear is that it is contagious. People feed off each other’s emotions and “the more negativity that surrounds us, the more negative we become.”

Fear is a similar emotion and has similar effects on us and our lives. Fear and anxiety will always be present in our lives, but the scary part about these two emotions is that they “disconnect us from our abilities”. Shetty says that “fear can help us identify and address patterns of thinking and behaviour that don’t serve us. 

Going within and making time for self-examination allows us to find the patterns of our fear, accept the fear, work with the fear, and detach from the fear. This detachment “allows you to address them” and find strategies to help us deal with the fear and negativity. We need to shift from “being controlled by fear to understanding it”. “Going through the processes of acknowledging fear, observing our patterns for dealing with it, addressing and amending those patterns helps us to reprogram our view of fear from something inherently negative to a neutral signal, or even an indicator of opportunity”.

This week, why not try to spend more time going deep inside to acknowledge and realise your fears and negativity. Identify the triggers and spend time finding strategies to change your thought patterns. Be aware of the people you spend time with, don’t be sucked into the negativity and fear of others. “And when we channel the energy behind our fears toward service, we diminish our fear of not having enough, and feel happier, more fulfilled, and more connected to the world around us”.

Dear God,

Fear and negativity can become all-consuming. Help me not to be sucked into the negativity of the world around me. Guide me as I try to amend my patterns and reprogram my view of fear so that I can live with a greater sense of freedom and happiness.

Amen.

 
Gillian Hugo

Gillian was educated at Pretoria High School for Girls and at Johannesburg College of Education where she qualified as a pre-school teacher. She has taught for more than 20 years in the government and private sectors. Gillian is married and has 2 children. She is training as a mindset and mindfulness coach. Gillian enjoys being creative and her hobbies include watercolour painting, reading, travelling and she loves the beach!

library@jesuitinsitute.org.za
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