3 Reflections to Resolve Irrational Fear
In a world of mass media propaganda with journalists constantly trying to get people to react to click-bait headlines, it’s important to not let those manipulating through fear control your mind.
In order to break free from irrational fear, that is, fear that is not warranted for one’s life and risks, it’s important to engage in a three-step reflection process to help keep your mind sound and focused on your goals.
Let’s review them.
Step 3: Reflect on how your fear of one issue compares to other risks you readily accept.
One of the easiest ways to recognize when a fear is irrational is to compare one’s fear of a situation to other events one has already accepted without living in fear.
For example, take unwarranted fears about corona.
If you are under the age of 40 in America, the chances of dying from Corona are lower than your chances of dying in a car accident.
If you are in America, the chances of dying from an obesity-related cause in America is more of a long-term threat than your chances of dying solely from Corona.
If you lived in America through 2017 and 2018, you lived through the H1N1 flu season where more than 80,000 people died from the flu.
So if you do not live in fear while in a car, if you do not live in fear about your diet and exercise, and if you didn’t bat an eye during the 2017 to 2018 flu season, then you may be able to recognize that living in paralyzing fear over the Corona situation may be a bit irrational.
So, what can you do once you’ve recognized that a fear is not as scary as compared to other readily-accepted risks?
Let’s look at step number two.
Step 2: Reflect on your priorities and values so you can maximize your potential.
Once you’ve thought about the issue you were fearful of and compared it to other risks you have accepted already, it becomes easier to reorient yourself to focus on your priorities and values so you can move forward with your life.
By thinking about what you wish to accomplish and what you value, you help yourself focus on what steps need to be performed so you can continue to live your life without the fear.
For example, if you were concerned about the Corona situation, but now have come to realize that your personal risks are low compared to other risks you already accept, then you can re-focus on what you were trying to accomplish before the fear-mongering and strive for those goals.
Maybe that was finishing an outdoor project, starting a new business, or trying to spend more time with family.
Whatever it is that you value, take time to reflect on what you want to prioritize so you can make plans to achieve those goals.
Finally, Step 1: Reflect on possible solutions to help you move forward.
Once you’ve thought about the priorities you had before the irrational fear came about, it’s time to think about solutions to help yourself move forward with what you’re prioritizing.
Note down what you would like to see accomplished in result and brainstorm ways you could work to achieve those goals.
Understandably, you may have to deal with others who have irrational fears along the way.
Use what you’ve learned in thinking about how to overcome irrational fear to build a bridge of understanding.
This can come in the form of sharing what you’ve learned while still maintaining a sense of empathy for others’ concerns.
By focusing on reason and evidence in kindness, you will more likely win over others who may be stuck in the same irrational fear cycle you once were, and you will be more productive moving forward on your own life goals.
Coronavirus: COVID Deaths In U.S. By Age, Race
Fatality Facts 2018 – Teenagers
QuickStats: Death Rates* for Motor Vehicle Traffic Injury,† by Age Group — National Vital Statistics System, United States, 2015 and 2017
Adult Obesity Facts