Do you experience anxiety, or find yourself looping through irrational fears that you don’t even believe in? Have you tried traditional methods of resolution, but found relief either partial or elusive?
So many approaches to healing address the body, mind, and emotions, but forget that we exist far beyond our human faculties. When we fail to take into account the power of our infinite presence, we often miss what I’ve found to be the only real and lasting avenue to healing. In other words, this is not your first rodeo here on earth, and if you are addressing an issue exclusively from the person/personality you are this time around, you are significantly limiting your potential!
This article offers another approach where you access more of your consciousness, presence, and being as a means of moving you beyond your limited human anxieties and fears. When we are connected with our essence that is more than our physical body, mind, or emotions, we have access to change and transformation that isn’t available through singular human means. One of the routes to this expanded power and resource is through the imaginal realm.
So let’s play. Are you ready?
First, bring to mind three things that you either fear or that make you anxious. You may just have one, and that is fine, too. But if you ever find yourself in a pattern of anxiety or fear, you likely have more than one doorway in.
Once you’ve made your list of three, rank them in order from your biggest to your smallest, from the thing that gets you the most to the one that gets you the least.
Then, let’s begin with the one you named as the smallest. I’ll tell you a secret: this is often the most potent one, as whatever is really controlling the fear mechanism tends to minimize itself in our awareness. It’s the big thing hiding behind the curtain.
Now is where we play. Imagine you are in a dream. You can be watching it, in it, or both. In fact, you may have even dreamt this fear while you were sleeping. But rest easy, this need not be a nightmare, because we are approaching it consciously instead of out of a reflexive (and sometimes desperate!) need to get away. This intentional courage makes all the difference. Another difference is that you are going to play your anxiety or fear out all the way through. There is a theory that says one of the reasons people watch so many frightening or upsetting TV shows and movies where bad things happen, is that these are a way for people to resolve the unresolved fears in themselves. There may be scary events along the way, but usually by the end of the episode or drama, everything gets wrapped up neatly. Closure. All done!
The thing with our fears is, most of them never actually happen. Instead we slog through them over and over in our heads, imagining and creating them while simultaneously resisting them. Since we can’t resolve them, they only serve to amplify themselves, like a feedback loop. This creates a tremendous amount of tension and exhaustion. I know you know.
So let’s go another way. Back to your dream.
In your dream, the thing you are anxious about or fear happens. It actually happens, and you walk all the way through it and out the other side. Begin by taking note of the details: Where are you? What are you wearing? Who are you with? What happens, exactly? How does it unfold? What do you do next?
Remember, it’s a dream. Just keep going. What do you say when it happens? Do you look to anyone for help? How do they respond? How do you resolve it? If it takes you all the way to death, what happens on the other side? It’s a dream, remember? Just watch and see.
Now how do you feel as all of this happens? Name the feelings. Write them down.
What do you do to take care of yourself, now that this has happened? Do you feel triumphant for having survived it? Are you shaken to your core? Do you lie down for a nap?
Take a deep breath and simply notice what happened in the dream, and then let it go with a big exhale. The episode you’re watching has ended. Breathe. And then let’s go back to those feelings you wrote down.
Take a look at your list. Notice if these feelings remind you of anything else in your life. Are they familiar? Do they remind you of potent experiences from another time in your life? The core feelings of a recurring anxiety or fear will point you toward something deep that is asking for loving attention. It is often what happened when you were too small to be able to fend for yourself, reason your way through it, or find a way out of the situation. For example, someone who suffered childhood abuse might have written down, “shame, terror, humiliation” around a fear about public speaking.
Thus the anxiety is an echo of the trauma you had long ago, which is why it feels so insurmountable, even with your adult capacities of reason, logic, and processing. This is because the emotional thrust of the fear isn’t reasonable, won’t ever be reasonable, and understanding has zero correlation to shifting emotion. Our childhood fears do not respond to mature reasoning, precisely because they are the fears of a 3-year old, or 7-year old, or 12-year old. In our fear we have regressed to our emotional and mental capacities at the age of the trauma. “Just relax” may as well be, “Grow three heads.” Which is why traditional mental exercises often cannot touch these fears. They feel like bandaids on a lost limb, or like a dish towel to stave a flood.
So what do we do? Notice there was part of you watching all of your dream unfold, even the anxiety in it. You may have entered into the feelings of your anxiety, but part of you noticed you were doing that. This part is the observer, part of the vantage point of your infinite self. So let’s access it, and let the healing begin. When we approach healing through the conscious presence and embodiment of the whole of what we are, we begin to build a bridge between our infinite being, i.e. our presence beyond our mind/emotions/body/personality, and our frightened, human self.
Allow this observing part to ask the afraid, small part of you what it needs. Listen as it answers, and then begin to give your little one’s heart what it desires. Let your own presence become the one that provides a safe place to be. Let your presence provide a listening ear. Maybe she says, “I need to be seen.” “I need to be safe.” “There’s nowhere to go.” Be that safe space in your infinite awareness. Offer compassion, patience, and gentleness. Notice that the terrorized part of you begins to relax. You begin to see the way through.
When we face the fears directly, we have a chance to move beyond them. When we face them in the company of our infinite being, miracles unfold. This loving awareness is what allows the part of us that was never fully seen, heard, cared for, or loved to know it has our complete and undivided attention, so it doesn’t have to keep vying for it through fear, pain and anxiety. Ultimately, it’s a good and beautiful thing that we keep torturing ourselves with our fears until we pay attention in this new way, as this is the path to awakening. This is where we experience ourselves as whole, complete, and living as the freedom and love that we are.
If this resonates with you, you are invited to join us in Living Awake. You’ll find a community of like-hearted, awakening beings gathered there, and we frequently walk through processes such as these, as well as explore what’s on the other side of them in expanded states of consciousness. You’re always welcome!
Infinite Love –