I don’t know anybody who has not been affected by the repercussions of Covid-19 pandemic. And not only my family and friends, but also my patients and their family and friends. I tend to get my information from real people rather than social media.
I came to believe the information on the news or social media can be overdramatized because it feeds on emotions of fear and greed. Living in fear (even well justified) and observing the stock market soaring (greed) is very toxic and can create havoc not only for your nervous system. The problem is that these destructive emotions have deep roots in every person’s subconscious mind – they are evolutionary and generational.
To put it in perspective, 1. having reasons for fear and greed and 2. responding to these reasons with fear and greed – are two very different things. The reasons will always be here, there always will be a reason to be afraid, and somebody will do better than you financially. Even the two wealthiest people in the world compete over who got more money and probably lost sleep over it. How silly is that!
So, both emotions are not only destructive but also incredibly distracting. They tend to take your mind away from what is important – moving forward with your goals, aspirations, passions, and everything else in your control. And also from identifying the rationality of the severity of these emotions. Again, everybody is going through that. The answer is how conscious are you about it.
In my clinical practice, I deal more with fear coming up as a reason for chronic fatigue. And it can be a fear about anything, even an anxiety about being less than perfect. So, how to deal with fear when it arises?
The first and the most essential step is to realize you are in complete control of your own mind. Other people/media/memories will continuously try to hijack it, but you got to remind yourself that your mind is yours and you are in control.
This is a quick shortcut to doing it (it can take you only 10 minutes):
- Write down your fear (measure the intensity of the fear from 1 to 10, 10 being the most intense)
- Are you in complete control of the reasons for your fear?
- If not – identify what is in your control and start this process from the beginning.
- If yes:
- Write down everything you can do to prevent that from happening. What can you plan, take into account, prepare?
- Write down how you can mitigate the damage if this fear comes true, so you will continue with the plan.
- The question to ask ”Is anyone else in history ever figured this out. The chances are, yes, it is not such a unique fear to come across. Somebody dealt with it already.
There are more steps to override your fear response, depending on the nature of it. But the outline above is a good start.
Dr. Maya Sarkisyan
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