Are You Afraid to be Free from Fear?

 This time of year is especially meaningful to me. Years ago I had a harrowing experience that turned out to be one of the most powerful and important course-corrections of my life. Every year I reflect upon it, and particularly within the context of it occurring close to Independence Day.
Every year I search myself to identify yet another way in which the experienced served me, and I am always able to discover at least one gem that allows me more and more freedom and joy. Here is this year’s punchline: what I have recognized is that living in the moment frees me from fear.
For me, fear means using my imagination to conjure up future non-preferred situations. It hasn’t even happened, and I’m already freaking myself out over it. That alone proves to me that something doesn’t have to be physical in order to be real and impactful to my body and mind in some way. I have come to understand that physical and inner reality are unique to each perceiver, and I dictate my own experience of reality.
I have also come to understand that when I stay in the moment by immersing myself in whatever experience I find myself, there is no room for imaginary shenanigans! When I remain focused on the task at hand, I’m here, right here and right now, and all is well.
There is another interesting component to the fear thing that I gleaned from my harrowing experience: I notice that any event I experience physically is different than how I imagine it would be. During my harrowing experience, it felt as if my mind jumped out of my body and was somehow protected from harm. This was something I could never have imagined or anticipated.
I think maybe it is similar to what others have mentioned – like being in a car accident but feeling like everything happened in slow motion, or being unconscious for a period of time and then waking up but not remembering what happened. Or like experiencing a natural disaster and seeing how it brings strangers together to help each other.
It’s like somewhere, somehow, there’s an invisible yet protective shield that surrounds us. That between the physical and non-physical there is a mysterious yet dynamic and glorious dance that transcends time and space, with our journey and ultimate safety as its only concern.
It may appear that my point is, “Relax, it’s not that bad.” That’s not it (although relaxing certainly isn’t a bad idea). My point is, since we have the gift of defining our present experience, why not live in this moment, doing what you are doing, and staying present by acknowledge that you are doing it? Why not consider appreciating it?
You can even just appreciate that you have the ability to perceive, and know that whatever arises, you will address it beautifully.
Much can be said for how this might impact your world. In my experience, when I stay in the moment it feels like time and aging actually slows down. I also notice that I am stress free, which the medical community says helps my physical body (e.g., my heart and immune system) as well as my mind.
What might your life be like if you were free from fear? How might things be different? What might you be able to enjoy because of it?
I invite you to consider identifying fear as imagining non-preferred situations. I also invite you to part ways with it. Consider saying “so-long” to imaginary non-preferred situations by bringing yourself back to the present moment when you find yourself wandering into thoughts that only serve to scare you. Don’t be afraid to embrace a course-correction for yourself by getting rid of fear.
And, finally, might this new sense of freedom – the willingness to stay right here, right now – be the very thing you use to build a bridge from your present self to the life you actually dream of? Let me know how it goes!

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