Coping With Fear…Without Food

Yesterday during my workout at the gym, I kept glancing at the news on TV.

I don’t typically watch the news, but with the recent bombings in Paris, I wanted to see the latest developments.

On Good Morning America, they interviewed a psychiatrist on how to cope with fear.

Of course, these bombings have scared many of us around the world.

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The fear is palpable and the news media certainly plays on our fears, heightening it in many cases.

The suggestions of this psychiatrist were to:

  • Pay attention to how you feel
  • Reflect on healthy ways you coped
  • Stay centered and balanced

In my opinion, these suggestions are really vague. So vague, in fact, as to not be much help at all.

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How do you FEEL about what’s happening in the world? Do you feel scared and unsafe?

After ‘paying attention’ to those feelings, now what?

If you’re like me, my ‘healthy’ ways of coping in the past were to eat large amounts of food so I didn’t have to feel the fear or the pain.

I didn’t have other options.

And after eating like that, there was no balance…only more pain.

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So what does staying centered and balanced look like? Am I supposed to stand on one leg and try not to fall over?

As an alternative, I’d like to give you some practical things you can do that really ARE healthy and I KNOW will help alleviate your fear.

First, DO pay attention to how you feel. But here’s a way to actually do that which will allow you to feel better.

When you think about your fear of not feeling safe, I want you to notice where you feel discomfort in your body.

The ‘in your body’ part is important. Is it in your shoulders? Your neck? Behind your eyes?

Get really curious about the sensation and keep your attention on it.

Do this with a sense of calm and love.

As you stay with the sensation, the feeling of fear will decrease and potentially disappear altogether.

Doing this one thing will allow you to cope in a healthy way.

Forget the food. Ditch the sweets.

You’ll just feel worse afterwards, so that isn’t a form of coping.

Try this instead…give yourself even just 5 minutes to sit with the sensation in your body and I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how you feel afterwards.

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More ways to cope might be taking a walk in a beautiful natural setting, listening to some peaceful music, sending prayers of happiness and peace to all human beings in pain, smelling or diffusing an essential oil such as Young Living’s ‘Joy’ or ‘Peace and Calming’, tapping on acupuncture points in a style such as EFT.

Find what feels most peaceful to you

And lastly, a great way to stay centered and balanced is to meditate.

Turning inward and calming the mind — as much as possible — is necessary in order to counteract the monkey mind that wants to run wild with our fear.

As beings who are not truly separate from each other, our individual consciousness affects global consciousness, and the calmer you are, the more calm can show up in our world.

Be the change you wish to see

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Meditation helps you be the change.

Find a style you like, or a teacher you resonate with.  

I personally am a student of A Course in Miracles and one of my favorite teachers is Marianne Williamson.

I meditate every day on the truths in ACIM that love casts out fear; if fear exists, there is not love; but love is all there is; so fear does not exist.

This doesn’t make sense to our logical mind, which is why there is the Course.

It is a course in mind training that ultimately leads us from feeling fear, to experiencing love and peace.

Since love is all there is, and love is all you are, anchor yourself in love as much as possible.

It’s the ultimate antidote to fear.

I hope that these suggestions give you helpful guidance and offer you concrete actions to take to feel better during this disturbing time.

And please share your experiences in the comments  below!

Alicia

 

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