Today, I’m giving you 3 strategies you can use immediately to fight fear in all areas of your life.
I’m a practical girl.
I can philosophize and get all prosy, but at the end of the day, give me practical anytime.
I believe that fear is at the root of nearly every battle we fight, if not every single one. I battled fear all my life until I realized what I was up against. I was trying to deal with secondary emotions, not always realizing that fear masquerades as other feelings. And that disguise makes it harder for us to get at the source.
For example, rejection could have a root fear of being left out, or not being good enough, not lovable. Insecurity could have a root fear of not measuring up, or fear of being worthless. Rage could have a root fear of being weak or of losing position or control.
When it hit me that fear is at the root of so many struggles, I started to pay attention to the people around me and what they did to fight fear and stay in peace and joy.
I watched myself go through things and change, and I paid attention to what I did that worked and what didn’t. Three of my favorite strategies are in the list below.
3 Things You Can Do Today to Fight Fear
- Start pumping in the positive messages. Right now. Whatever works. Whoever. And keep ’em coming. Move against the fear, not with it. A comedian you love, songs, speakers, scripture, TED talks, podcasts, redemptive movies and television shows, etcetc. This is a good time to keep the material at a PG-13 or less. Lots of drama yields stress, which is just an everyday word for fear. Try different things until you feel encouraged. If you are aware of any level of fear in your life, begin to saturate your mind with positive messages.
- Repeat the positive messages you hear out loud. The words we speak and focus on affect our brain development and our response to stress. A current theory in the field of neuroscience holds that our brain function, and even DNA, can be changed by focusing on one simple positive word like “peace” or “love.” Of course, the more positive words you hold on to for longer periods of time, the greater the positive effect on your brain, and therefore, your response to stress. Just pick a quote from one of your positive messages above, or even a single word right now, like “peace.” And start saying it over and over. It does take time for a significant long-term change to occur in terms of neuroplasticity (the changeability of the brain), but most people I talk to feel relief almost immediately as they focus on positive messages with their speech.
- Take 3 Deep Breaths. & add some lavender. Many people are familiar with the idea of deep breathing, but how often do you actually do it? Right now, close your eyes, take a deep “belly breath” on a count of eight. Hold it for a count of eight, and exhale, a controlled, slow breath for a count of eight. Can’t do eight counts? Start with a count of four and work up. You can do this anywhere, anytime. And your lungs will thank you! Also, stop by the health food store or call your friends who know about oils. Get some lavender sachets, lavender tea, lavender oil, whatever, and start enjoying the fragrance. Research at the University of Maryland, among others, has confirmed that lavender has soothing effects. (If you use essential oils, research safe practices and always dilute.)
More lists to come, things that are more lifestyle changes or might require you to order a book or watch a video or develop habits. But I wanted to start with things that you can do right now. I still do all of these things if I find myself in a struggle. I diffused lavender oil in my room the other night. Best night’s sleep I’ve had in a while.
What practical things do you do to fight fear?
Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Deut31:6
Prayer for those fighting fear:
Father, thank you that You never leave us. Thank you for Your hand on us. Today, I’m binding fear and praying that my friends will feel Love, stronger than any other thing. Jesus, be more real than any circumstance, any anxiety or stress or insecurity or pride. Or any other type of fear that comes to distract. Fear cannot have our peace. I pray for supernatural strength. For encouragement. For joy and laughter in the face of circumstances. For ministering spirits to go out and bring comfort and reignite the feelings of passion and purpose that cause us to fight fear like we mean it, to rise up and move against the lies instead of letting them steamroll us and steal our destinies. I pray for victory and breakthrough in every way today, in Jesus’ name.