Fear is one of those natural human emotions coming from the beginning of our existence to help us survive through the fight or flight response. Our ancestors would have a fearful response when confronted by a hungry saber toothed tiger where the brain would subsequently release adrenaline to get them acting more on instinct than cognition to prevent over thinking that could lead to delaying flight.
Modern times have eliminated most of the threats our ancestors faced so most fear based responses are irrational and caused by over analyzing situations that aren’t life or death. I’m not saying that life is full of unicorns and rainbows, we still face some scary situations sometimes, but those are far and few between unless you choose to live a more risky lifestyle. When we get worked up to the same degree over situations that are minor, we still get the adrenaline released throughout our body which prevents our most productive solution to the problem. In fact, this is how we increase opportunities to be manipulated because the government uses the media to scare us so that we’re in a state of panic that blocks the cognitive process. Then we willingly sign away our rights for safety when we weren’t ever really in danger.
Even when not dealing with a sinister government, this irrational response effects our ability to handle problematic situations effectively because the adrenaline release prevents us from strategically finding solutions. So by not controlling our response and getting all worked up over situations undeserving of our emotions, we put ourselves in worse situations that increase stress and fear. This becomes a continual downward cycle all because we chose not to control irrational thoughts. Fear, being an emotion, is the result of our thoughts so when we choose to look at the worst case scenario for every situation, we increase stress/fear and start a negative domino effect.
By letting fear control us, we also continue to stay in miserable situations since change and risk are scary but both are required for progress. We all fear the unknown and putting ourselves out there but that initial fear response is normal and must be overcome. Most people prefer to remain as-is so the smallest amount of courage or thought control can go a long way, increasing your chances for the good things in life that the majority are too afraid to pursue. I’m not suggesting impulsiveness or unnecessary risk, only emotional control and some cojones.
Ask yourself this one question when you start to panic: What’s the worst thing that can happen? If you can accept the worst case scenario then why worry? And then consider the likelihood of worst case scenario. Rarely are things on either side of the spectrum, great or horrible, so they are manageable.
Control your fear to prevent manipulation and stagnation.