- Dixie Thomas
Fear No More:
Updated: Apr 5, 2020
How to Overcome Anxiety and Fear in Times of Uncertainty
By Dixie Thomas, CLC
Change and uncertainty can cause even the most grounded people to have fear and anxiety. Since the Covid-19 virus has marched across the world as a pandemic and taken center stage, many of us have felt waves of anxiety or fear. Thoughts race in our minds such as--how many people are actually dying from this virus? What if I get sick? What if someone we love gets the virus? What if we lose our jobs? What kind of economic downturn can we expect? How can I entertain my kids. Will we ever find toilet paper?
My friends, I want you to fear no more. I want you to know that you can have peace in the midst of chaos and uncertainty. No matter what types of situations you may be facing, here are five practical strategies for overcoming fear and anxiety.
Check Your Thoughts
One of the most important things you can do to curb anxiety and have inner peace, is to be aware of your thoughts, and focus your thoughts on the positives. The human brain is constantly firing off thoughts, even at the subconscious level. Thoughts are constantly flowing like a river through our heads, but we can direct our thoughts and choose what we think about. If we choose to dwell on the negatives and the things we fear, we will in turn have negative feelings such as anxiety. Negative thoughts lead to negative feelings and negative feelings to negative actions. Be aware of what you are thinking, and dwell and focus on the positives that bring you peace. That might require turning off the news for a while or deciding to look at social media less.
Get the Facts
Often times we fear the unknown. While we can’t control some unknowns, make every effort to be well informed so you can have a better idea of what to expect and what options you have in a given situation. Sometimes, simply knowing the facts can relieve our fear. To take things a step further, be sure your information and facts are coming from a trusted and truthful source. Misinformation can cause us to have fears that are unfounded. Why waste your time on something you don’t even need to fear? Get the facts and remember to keep your thoughts on the positives.
Ask Yourself Powerful Questions
You might have identified that you have some fear and anxiety, but you aren’t sure what is causing it or maybe you think you know what’s causing it, when in fact you have a deeper root issue. It’s time to ask yourself some powerful questions. Here’s some examples: What is actually causing me to have fear? What is it that I truly fear? What can I do about this fear? Peel back the layers. Maybe you know you have anxiety about the Covid-19 virus, and you ask yourself what you really fear and discover you fear losing your job. What is it about losing your job that scares you? You might come to the realization that you fear not being able to pay your bills or provide for your family more than your fear the virus. Another powerful question: What or Who am I putting my trust in? Asking yourself powerful questions can help you process thoughts and feelings and pin point the issue to then come up with a solution. Now, what can you do about this fear of not being able to pay the bills? Writing your questions and answers in a journal can be a great way to process and create solutions that bring peace.
Make a Plan
Once you’ve identified what is causing you fear or anxiety, and brainstormed some possible solutions, then it’s time to make a plan. What is the worst-case scenario in the given situation? On some level, thinking about the worst that could happen will force you to face your fears. But considering the scenarios will help you be prepared with a plan if what you fear happens, so that even in the worst possible situation you will be ready. What do you need to do and what resources could you turn in the worst-case scenario? Knowing you have a plan will give you greater confidence and peace.
Remember Your Faith
Consider in whom and what you are putting your faith and trust. Do you believe that God is in control, and that He is your ultimate source? Remember what God has done for you in other times in your life. How has God brought you through difficulty in the past? When situations and thoughts come up that bring you anxiety or fear, how are you bringing those to God? I Peter 5:7 says to “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” I love the visual this verse evokes—casting or throwing your anxiety and fear—onto God and letting him take it. And that means you have to let go of it. You can let go of it. Philippians 4:5-7 says this: “The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”
Put these strategies in place and see what happens. Check your thoughts, get the facts, ask yourself powerful questions, make a plan, and remember your faith…and fear no more. You might not be able to make the storms and uncertainty disappear, but you can choose how you react. Have peace in the midst of the storms of life.
Dixie Thomas is a certified Life and Spiritual Coach, as well as an author, wife, mother, and rancher. Check out her website at www.TheCompassLifeCoach.com