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January 14, 2021

6 Steps to Break the Cycle of Fear, Insecurity & Hate in Unprecedented Times.

I fully support individuals speaking their truth—in fact, I encourage it.

However, I implore you to dig a little deeper and ask yourself where your truth is coming from. I don’t mean to cite your source, either—although that couldn’t hurt.

I mean to look inside and ask yourself if your truth is coming from a place of fear, anxiety, and insecurities, or love and compassion. In my opinion, the truth only comes from the heart and a place of love.

These are unprecedented times. We cannot be ruled by fear, insecurities, and hate.

I know times are uncertain, unstable, and constantly changing. There are endless stressors that have been placed on individuals, families, organizations, businesses, and the government right now. We are all faced with real and perceived threats to our well-being, leading to mass fear.

It is during these times that we must stay grounded in our truth.

It is so easy to get caught up in the toxic negativity and lose sight of our own truth. It is easy to feel defeated, bitter, and jaded. It is easy to allow these moral and political issues that are coming to a head in our society to rip apart our relationships and divide us. It is easy to fall prey to misinformation and become reactive and act from a place of survival and fear.

Haven’t we evolved past this to some degree? We have the ability to think critically, to problem solve, to love. We have the ability to investigate and have unlimited information at our fingertips.

Yet, here we all are—uncertain, afraid, at odds with each other, and barely able to coexist.

Truth

It seems simple enough. The property of being in accord with fact or reality. But is truth always absolute, or can it be relative to one’s own perspective?

Truth is based on fact, but we are in the age of misinformation. We are constantly being misled, lied to, and manipulated. Truth seems hard to grasp when you don’t know what facts to trust.

It is imperative that during these times, we do our research, use our critical thinking skills, and not be distracted by illusions.

One’s own reality is shaped by their belief systems. Therefore, the belief system you accept as fact may define your truth and form your reality, or maybe your reality forms your truth.

I am no stranger to questioning my truth and reality. I am no stranger to manipulation and misinformation. I am no stranger to the impending sense of doom that comes with not knowing who or what to trust or what is real. I am fully aware of the immense and deep fear that comes with this uncertainty.

I have learned that when the world outside becomes too turbulent and confusing, it is time to shut it down and bring it in.

In my reality, there is no place for hate and intolerance. My truth comes from a place deep inside. The place where I feel most connected to the source and myself. A place where I can have an awareness of the difference between fear, insecurities, anxiety, and love and compassion.

However, that is not everyone’s place of truth. I need to coexist in a world with individuals whose truth is based on intolerance, hate, racism, misinformation, and conspiracy theories.

I do not know if the belief system I accept as fact is defining my truth and forming my reality, or if my reality is forming my truth—but I do know that either way, I choose to act from a place of love over fear.

No matter how uncertain times become, I choose love. This is my truth. It is my anchor. We all need an anchor, especially in times like these.

Fear

Some people make the choice to begin to act from a place of fear and anchor themselves to hate and intolerance. Fear is what we experience when there is a real or perceived threat to our well being. Our fears may be valid, but that does not mean our reaction to the emotion is warranted or justified. When we focus on this perceived threat to our well-being, we may then begin to worry and dwell on that which we cannot control, leading to anxiety. This, in turn, may lead to a sense of helplessness, hopelessness, and depression.

When we begin to act or react from places of fear, we reinforce that fear. We fuel it and give it power. Fear doesn’t just take its toll on us mentally, fueling depression and anxiety, but it also causes physical symptoms, like a weakened immune system and cardiovascular disease.

When the little almond-shaped amygdala in our brain becomes activated by a perceived threat to our well-being, we may respond with intense emotions such as fear, anxiety, anger, and aggression. This is because our fight or flight becomes activated. Other areas of our brain may essentially go offline, leaving us in a survival state.

When the media and politicians are constantly fear-mongering, how do we break the cycle?

Here are six steps to get started:

1. Evaluate your fear.
Ask yourself, what is the perceived threat to my well-being? Am I truly in danger?

2. Worry about what you can control.
The more we worry about what we cannot control, the more we disempower ourselves. When we begin to address what we can control, there is room for action.

3. Approach topics with a sense of skepticism and curiosity.
Do not blindly follow the masses, but do not automatically disregard differing viewpoints. Absorb, explore, evaluate.

4. Do your research.
Do your research, then research your research, and your source, and your source’s source. In the age of misinformation, this is critical.

5. Act from a place of love and compassion.
When we decide to act from a place of love, compassion, and understanding, we begin to break down the barriers that separate us. We are more open to understanding another individual viewpoint, and even if we do not agree, we may still be able to respect them and learn something.

6. Make positive changes and impacts where you can.
Using everything you have gathered, go forth and speak your truth, and make positive changes and impacts where ever you can.

“A lie doesn’t become truth, wrong doesn’t become right and evil doesn’t become good just because it is accepted by a majority” ~ Brooker T. Washington

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