Live your Life – Don’t limit yourself through fear
Types of fear:
Fear can come in a number of different shapes and sizes. I mostly experience fear when I watch the news and see all the bad things happening in the world. I then start to worry not only about my own safety, but mostly the safety of my friends and family. I experience stress and anxiety, because there isn’t really anything I can do to change the world and the crime that happens in it. This makes us feel useless and that only increases our fear.
The negative effects of fear:
The fear we experience for the things we see on the news or for any other reason you might experience fear, prevents you from living your life to the fullest. An example of this would be when you won’t go away on holiday, because you’ve seen too many car accidents on the news. Another example is when you don’t want to visit a county, because you’ve read about the aeroplanes that went missing or the aeroplanes that were shot down. Fear can also take away the happiness in your life when you’re too busy worrying about the future, that you don’t enjoy the time you have now with your friends and family. It can even have a negative effect on your health.
What you should do:
Indentify the Fear:
By identifying the source of your fear and by understanding why you are experiencing this fear, will help you decide what you can do to overcome it.
Mostly the fears we experience are caused by other people’s actions or events in nature, which are out of our control. So it’s quite pointless worrying about something that you have no control over. The best thing you can do is to accept it for what it is and to accept your powerlessness in the particular situation. This would calm you down and allow you to think rationally about your particular situation.
One of the ways you could reduce your fear is to create different kind of scenarios of what might happen and how you could approach your particular situation. This would make you feel less powerless, knowing that no matter what happens you have an idea of how you could react and that you won’t be completely surprised. Just keep in mind the chances that of any of your plans are going to work is slim. The technique of making plans is only really a way to calm you down. So don’t freak out if you’re faced with a scenario you didn’t think of.
Remember to enjoy every day and everyone in your life. Also try to see the silver lining. One way you could put colour in your day is to listen to music you love when you’re feeling afraid or by surrounding yourself with people you care about and who cares about you in return.
Then ultimately remember to breathe. Trust me when I say it will make you feel better if you take slow deep breaths. It will calm you down, help you think rationally about your situation and it’s really the only thing you can do.
Author: Irene van Staden
Irene van Staden is currently a second year student at the University of Stellenbosch, studying BA (Art and Culture). Her interests range from language dialects, visual art, literature, art festivals, theatre, cultural movements and student life.
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