Right now, the vast majority of people are scared about their health and the health of those they love. On top of that, there’s the possibility that we might also have to overcome a seemingly unavoidable economic crisis. So, with such discouraging news, misinformation, and even hate speech being bombarded into our lives every single day, how can you overcome your COVID-19 fears and conquer your life?
To understand how you can conquer your fears and take control of your life for good, we must quickly review some of the characteristics of our most basic emotions. Understanding what fear is, allows us to see every situation from a different perspective, which in turn makes most fears simply banish. It is really that simple, not easy, but simple.
What Fear Is?
Whether you look up the word in a dictionary or simply google it, you’ll find many different definitions, but in its most simple form, fear is simply an emotional reaction to something that makes us feel unsafe or threatened in some way. More important, fear requires two elements; A perceived threat and a sense of powerlessness.
Throughout history, fear has allowed us to survive, but there have been cases in which fearlessness has been more beneficial. From that perspective, most of us have felt fear and dealt with it whether by turning down the level of threat or by focusing on our sense of control.
If you have felt anxious about what the world is living right now, you’re not alone. Each day more and more people are struggling to cope with this new reality, but at the same time, some people are discovering an unexplored side of themselves. Something which can allow you to grow beyond your current limits.
How Does Fear Drive Action?
Since fear is a normal human response to a threat, it drives action by alerting your brain and motivating it to protect you from any harm. This is what causes the commonly known “Fight or Flight response”. Both fight and flight are actions taken in an attempt to protect yourself. Not allowing fear and your subconscious mind to take complete control of you is the key to successfully conquering something.
7 Ways to Conquer Your Fears
This obvious first step might be so obvious that it is often overlooked. Even the most overwhelming fear can start with a simple idea that grows until it feels as if it is too much to bear. So, be aware of this behavior, and every time you start to feel overwhelmed, take a step back and try to look at things from a different perspective.
Work On Your Sense Of Control
As explained before, fear requires a sense of powerlessness, which in turn derives from a lack of control. We basically fear that which is out of our control. So, one of the best ways you can keep your emotions at bay is to focus on that which you can control. By giving yourself a better sense of control you’ll boost your self-confidence and reduce all the noise caused by frightening situations.
Knowing what to focus your attention on is important to keep your peace of mind. Instead of focusing on “why”, focus on “what”. What are you going to do today? What are you doing right now? What do you want to do? These questions can help you focus on the moment and forget the stress that comes with the uncertainty of the future.
Distract Yourself And Your Mind
There are times in which there is nothing to do, and that’s when our mind simply starts wandering around and stressful ideas can take over our thoughts. If left alone and without something to direct its attention to, our brains can do a great job of spiraling downwards. To fight this, it is necessary to find an activity that’s able to engage our minds to distract it from fear-inducing thoughts.
Try Different Perspectives
Since fear starts with perceived danger, whether it is real or not, instead of focusing and dwelling in thoughts of hopelessness, you should focus on how you would react instead. It’s like having an emergency plan; you’ll do whatever it takes to avoid issues from happening, but if it comes to that, you’ll already be prepared. Another way to see it is to focus on the solutions, not on the problem.
Give Yourself A Break From Social Media
Technology is great. But exposing yourself to millions of opinions, discouraging news, and frightened people are simply not healthy. If possible, disconnect yourself from the internet, turn off your cell phone for a while or at least do your best to avoid exposing yourself to too much information. Your mind will thank you for it.
Focus On The Facts
It is too easy to fall into the mistake of believing everything you read or hear. However, after a while, this can be confusing and extremely stressful. To fight and overcome this all you need to do is block every piece of information that is not relevant to your current situation or any source that you don’t specifically trust.
It is very hard to handle an invisible threat; especially one that caught the world by surprise. We hear about it in the news all the time, we see it all over our social media feed, and we all know it’s there but it just seems so unpredictable that it’s hard not to fall victim of fear. But fear is a powerful tool that can drive us into action, and action is the first step to conquering your life.
By practicing your self-control, not only you’ll be able to improve your life right now, but you’ll also be prepared to deal with any stressful or frightening situation that you might encounter in the future.