Anxiety and Fear-Based Moves
If you’re following me, you have seen that, in my journey of change, I’m taking a 10,000 foot look into my life to see what I should start doing, could do better, or what needs to be removed.
One thing I’ve felt, seen and experienced is that I’m anxious! I really don’t like having to admit that, but it’s true. I can see times in my life that it rears its ugly head, too, so it’s not a new thing.
A silly, life-long anxiety for me is hearing motors run! I can be fast asleep and, if I hear the air conditioner kick on, I wake up in a cold sweat. Once, as a grade-school child, my dad and uncle were working on the car and had the hood up. I saw and heard the engine running and it made me panic, and I’ve hated that ever since. I’m not sure what that’s all about, but it might be a couple things. One is that it costs money to run that motor (a whole other chapter) and two, that it could stop running at any time and leave me in a predicament. FEAR, ugh! (Incidentally, the day after I wrote this, my 3 month old fridge freezer went out and I lost lots of food! What’s that all about?)
A monumental time in my past was when I was a single mom with 2 kids at home. I hadn’t been a “career mom,” but a wife and mom. So entering the world as the “head of household” and being mom and dad, and trying to be the “fun mom” I had in my mind that I was previously, was really stressful and challenging. Thankfully, we had a great church support system and I believe God was truly walking beside us, but the daily grind felt like it was all on God and my shoulders. And I’m grateful to say that we were taken care of and have grown from that time.
But, my kids will tell you that the anxious feelings were contagious to them. I often reflect and even talk with them, now that they are older, about how I realize what a big burden this was to them and how each of us might work through this type of situation differently, but it’s definitely changed all of us!
Fast-forward to the past couple of “Covid” years, and this feeling has permeated our entire culture. Now, with talk of war, gas prices, rising interest rates, skyrocketing home prices and continued travel restrictions I realize that, not only do I, but society has this belly-ache of anxiety that has quickly put the world in a state of fear. We fear the future, but I also see us fearing each other, too. We walk past someone walking on the street and we don’t make eye contact anymore. We were fed the notion that we should be afraid of people because they might make us sick or vice versa, and so we don’t feel in “community” anymore.
So much has gone into this state of being, but what do we do about it? How do I / we move forward and find freedom from this fear and anxiety?
Check out a small and mighty book from Dr. John Delony called “Redefining Anxiety.”
In an interview with Dr. Delony and Brian Buffini, several helpful steps were given. Here’s a few that resonated with me (and I’m paraphrasing them):
So, theoretically, this should be easy, but it’s going to be a new mind space for me.
BREATHE! I’m telling myself this as I write because I’m still feeling the negative rush. Maybe you will join me. BREATHE!
I know sharing can be difficult or awkward, but we need each other! I’ve learned the hard way in trying to handle stuff on my own. And, sometimes (even now) I still feel like I’m all by myself. But, let’s be strong together and decide to throw off anxiety and take the journey to freedom and community! Comment below with your thoughts on the questions posed above.