Choosing Love Over Fear: A Practial Approach (with Free .PDF Download)
Acting out of fear feels so depleting, draining, and pointless to me.
It really does. I didn’t even realize this fact about myself until late last week, when I was taking up an unusual residence in the doldrums. Slight dull ache in my head, empty tightness in my chest, and a tired, unfocused mind rounded out my trifecta of anatomical and mental issues.
What in blue blazes is wrong with me, I wondered. I wrote in my gratitude journal. I meditated and did breathing exercises. I worked out. I stretched. I hydrated. I took my supplements. I drank my green juice. I prayed. I visualized a future without this issue, all the while thanking God for the challenge.
The result of this gigantic pile of Allie-centered wellness, you ask? The big goose egg. Same headache, same anxiety, same spiraling mind.
It wasn’t until a blessed moment of silence in my cascading thoughts allowed for my intuition to speak up, plain as day. You are acting out of fear, not out of love. That’s the problem, you nutter (I added in the second part, for emphasis. I think my intuition likes to get sassy now and again).
Say what? I thought I had fixed that problem eight months ago.
Turns out, even though I was doing all the right things (and probably too many of them, to be honest), my mostly righteous and good actions were being driven from a place of fear, not faith and love.
What does this mean? Well, most of the teachers I ascribe to sort our emotional drive into two major categories: Fear-Based and Love (or Faith)-Based.
Acting out of fear doesn’t just mean being scared. That’s an easy one to identify. It can also look like taking action because you are panicked, or out of nervousness of the future, or out of trying to please other people in your life. It might present as being boastful, feeling fatigued, or limiting what you say because you fear argument or dissent. Fear-based emotions knock us out of integrity, and can knock us off our axis, if we aren’t careful.
Check out this list for a more complete look at Fear-Based and Love-Based emotions.
When I realized what was happening, I felt so relieved. After completing an inventory of what I was doing, and furthermore, why I was doing it, I discovered that most of my actions in the 3D world were in alignment with what I believed to be the highest good, but my mindset was dragging us down into fear.
This could be confusing. Let me show you what I mean with a few actual examples of what was plaguing me:
Action: Planning for an introductory session and assessment for a new client.
Fear-Based Emotion: I’m not going to get this done in time. I’m worried this won’t go well. What if she thinks this is boring? What if I’m not good enough to help her?
Love-Based Replacement: I’m excited to meet a new client! It’s going to give me a chance to try out new techniques. If my plan doesn’t work out, we can always change course in the moment. Let’s focus on the present and plan the best we can, and then I can think about the session tomorrow, when I’m there. I’m grateful to have this opportunity to meet someone new.
Action: Sending out query letters for my novel.
Fear-Based Emotion: What if they think this is a garbage novel? I’m so depressed. It took three hours to send out two emails…I’ll never have time for all of these! I should just quit while I’m ahead. Maybe this isn’t the book I should try to sell. Maybe this isn’t for me. But really, what can I write to make these people like me?
Love-Based Replacement: You’ve written the best, most authentic book you know how to write. Let’s hope that as we reach out every day, we are one step closer to finding the agent that is meant to be in lasting partnership with you. You need to find someone who shares your vision. Writing, and creation in general, is your highest purpose on this earth. You were meant for this. Your book is going to entertain (and hopefully inspire) so many women, you cannot give up now. The right agent will come.
Action: Taking coughing cat to vet.
Fear-Based Emotion: What if I’m going to lose her? What if she dies? In the past, our vet has suggested surgery to fix her problems…I’m worried he’ll do that again. What if I can’t say no to him if it feels wrong? Maybe I just won’t take her.
Love-Based Replacement: This visit is out of service to our cat. I’m grateful we can afford the vet, and I’ll think about Audrey’s diagnosis when it is given, and not before. Our vet acts out of integrity, and he’ll be sure to do what’s best for the cat. I’ll speak only truths in the vet’s office, and I don’t have to pursue any actions that my intuition deems unnecessary.
See what I mean? Most of my day was being filled up with the right actions, but the emotions I was ascribing to them? Capital FEAR, dear. Acting this way takes up so much bandwidth. In general, I find it more pleasant to operate from a place of service, and not a place of duty. Any time something starts to feel dutiful (which to me signifies obligation, being people-pleasing and having anxiety over the outcome if I don't perform the action) instead service-oriented (actions completed out of love, joy, and with alignment to your purpose), I try my best to realign. Total truth bomb here: If you meditate out of duty, exercise out of duty, drink green juice, or buy crystals out of duty, it’s not going to feel very good. If you do it out of service to yourself or others? That’s the ticket to love, self or otherwise.
So, have you been feeling a little out of alignment recently? Sluggish, anxious, or just living in a general malaise?
The following exercise will help:
Reframing Fear into Love
- Write down your major actions throughout the day.
- Write down what thoughts you ascribe to those actions. Are they primarily fear-based or primarily love-based?
- Look at the action itself. Is it moving you towards a higher spiritual, physical, mental, or emotional goal? Is it activating light in the community, or helping to heal others? If not, cross it off your list of actions. It is not serving you.
- If the action is serving you, and you find yourself reacting to it in fear-based emotional terms, rewrite a love-based replacement for it. Keep rereading your love-based replacement, pausing to give yourself time to feel those emotions.
Use this free download to organize your thoughts. Let me know how it goes in the comments below!
I know how draining it can be to emote fear-based emotions. I hope that this reflection can help you if you are stuck in those same doldrums that grabbed me by the ankles last week.