Have you ever seen a scary movie? One that keeps you on the edge of your seat with your heart racing? When you leave the theater and walk into the dark of night, someone bumps you. You jump, get irritated, even thinking, if not shouting, an obscene word to the innocent person.
What happened to the calm, cool you? It disappeared when the movie captured your emotions triggering your fears. You’re an adult. You can tell yourself it was just a fictional movie made with actors and props but for the moment your emotions are ruling your body.
The Online Dictionary defines fear as a belief that someone or something is dangerous and likely to cause terror or pain. However, as you walk further away from the movie theater you begin to calm down, breathe a bit deeper and relax.
As we know, our fears can warn us and keep us from impending danger – working to keep us safe. However, if you carry a deep-seated belief attached to your fears, it’s not easy to find a place of peace. And when fear overrules us, the default reaction is rarely good nor healthy. As we know all too well, it can play out in violent and harmful ways.
Unfortunately, there is an abundance of fear operating in the world today. So how do we reduce it? If you search the Internet you will find thousands of articles that give you numerous steps for reducing fear. I’d like to share one very simple one that has been used repeatedly with pleasant outcomes.
As a kid did you watch scary movies? Did they trigger nightmares or keep you afraid of the dark or being alone? Fortunately, most moms and dads know how to put their child’s fear to rest by using this time-tested remedy.
They explain that the movie is pretend – just like Halloween when they dress up as a skeleton or a pirate. Then they read a fairy tale to their child and even though a fierce battle might take place – light always conquers darkness. Their child can now sleep soundly knowing all is well in their small little kingdom.
Growing up, when did we stop believing that goodness always prevails – no matter what the circumstance or appearance? Maybe it’s time to remember that so we can summon our courage to stand up and confront our monsters, whether inside of us or on the outside. Perhaps not to slay them but to tame them.
Like in fairy tales we can conquer our fears. As light takes over it might even give us enough clarity to understand that they were just figments of our imagination. And that we really can have a happy ending.
“Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear.” ~ George Addair