How to overcome stress and fear when the situation seems too immense.
“If a problem is fixable, if a situation is such that you can do something about it, then there is no need to worry. If it’s not fixable, then there is no help in worrying. There is no benefit in worrying whatsoever.” – Dalai Lama XIV
What if you feel you’re facing a problem that you can’t fix? If your issue seems absolutely insurmountable, I want you to know that you’re not alone.
We’ve all lived through uncertainty and situations that were outside our control. There have been dark points in every person’s life.
So many people think that mastering the Law of Attraction is like magic. That it will solve every possible worry or hurt.
That’s not how it works.
Brave Thinking® teaches us that we are each more powerful and contain more potential than any circumstance, situation, or condition. In fact, that’s one of the core values of Brave Thinking Institute.
Being more powerful than a condition doesn’t mean that we ignore the condition or have the power to make the condition disappear. This is where so many people lose faith in manifesting because they weren’t taught properly.
It’s not magic, it’s mindset.
The stress and worry you focus on when there’s chaos lowers your vibration, and it can make it more difficult for you to overcome the situations in your life.
You can’t pretend problems don’t exist. You can’t worry problems away. Today, I want to talk about how to face these difficulties in a way that helps you raise your vibration to overcome the problems in your own life. In my life, I’ve found that some of those dark times and problems have led me to a greater purpose than I knew before.
Stress and Handling Problems
First, let’s talk about the different types of stress. There is positive and negative stress. When you work, most of the stress that you experience is positive stress if you love what you do. But your body doesn’t know the difference between positive and negative stress.
You feel anxiety when you’re overwhelmed. If there’s too much to do, there’s a problem you’re worried about, or you’re faced with too many opportunities, your body registers stress. Even though you might enjoy all of those things and all of those opportunities.
You also feel stress when you’re concerned about a situation that you can’t control. The health of a loved one or your own health, for example. When you’re focusing on that situation or concern, you’re also attracting more of the vibration or energy of that same circumstance.
Breathing is one of the things that I know helps me immediately. Many people know this. It’s why people will tell you to “just breathe”, when something happens, or you’re upset.
Breathing in a slow, deep manner is calming for your body and your mind.
When you feel yourself getting upset, stop for a moment. Calm yourself as much as you can. Take a slow, deep breath. Take a regular breath in through the nose and then blow out slowly, as if you’re blowing through a straw. Do this three times, and you’ll find your body starts to relax.
We are our least skillful under stress or when we’re operating from fear. This is why people put emergency plans in place. If you make a plan for a fire or catastrophe ahead of time, you can clearly and rationally think out the best way to handle the threat because there is no stress.
When we’re stressed, we may not be in our best selves. We might say things we don’t mean or make decisions that aren’t well-thought-out. So, whether it’s good stress or bad stress, calming ourselves can help us make better choices faster, so we don’t have regrets later.
What I’ve found in these moments of high stress, when I am focusing on a problem, is that I’m not being who I want to be. I need to stop, do three breaths, and make myself right at that moment. Then I can begin to move forward.
But I will say that I don’t carry it or beat myself up about being stressed or making wrong decisions. I’m having a human experience. I don’t expect myself to be perfect, but I do expect myself to make progress.
What Is a Problem?
There are many types of problems. When you think about it, none of our problems are solved or improved by worry. Because of our conditioning, it’s natural to worry and have stress when the situation is stressful. But you also have a choice in how you face these problems, you can choose what mindset you bring to the issue.
A problem might be a small, very solvable thing. You can easily look at the issue and rationally think about the different solutions that are possible. Then reason out the best course of action.
Some problems don’t have that sort of solution. They are not issues within your control, and you cannot rationally think out a way to “fix” the problem. For instance, the death of a loved one or a catastrophe are not problems you can fix. Though they are certainly dark times that we all go through.
Let me give you an example from Handbook to a Higher Consciousness by Ken Keyes, Jr.
His example was in how to handle a flat tire. If a tire blows out on your car, you have options in the way you react to this. You can get mad at the tire. You can get angry at the people who sold you the tire. You can become resentful of the money it will take to fix the tire. Another option is that you don’t react with anger or negativity. That you don’t allow this mindset to ruin your own peace.
When you realize that the flat tire is part of your current circumstances, you can make peace with that situation. Getting upset about it doesn’t make the situation better. In fact, it makes your mindset and mood much worse.
You also can’t expect or insist that your tires never blow out. What you can do is to change your mindset to a higher vibration. The vibration that you have a preference that your tires stay inflated. But when the tire goes flat, you accept this as part of your current situation. You don’t send out negative or angry vibrations that cause tension and anxiety because that will reverberate and keep your current situation negative for much longer.
How to Handle a Problem
There are three steps to handle a problem that works for most problems that you face. The steps are simple, but they come in handy when you’re faced with a difficult situation because they give you a roadmap to help you think and reason. And they give you time to breathe to calm worry. The three steps:
- Is There a Problem?
- What Is the Problem?
- What Are My Goals for This Problem?
Step 1 – Is There a Problem?
When you’re worried, stressed, or facing obstacles, the first thing you have to address is the question of whether or not it is a problem. Is there a problem or are you overwhelmed?
Sometimes there really is no problem. There might be difficult tasks that are solvable.
For example, you may not know how to reach your dream. The how isn’t important, though. In Brave Thinking, we know that any dream we can envision we can reach, even if we can’t work out how to get there. In fact, if you know how, it’s a sure sign the dream isn’t big enough.
The first step is in determining if there is a problem you’re facing, or if it’s worry or difficulty over a situation that’s not really a problem.
Step 2 – What Is the Problem?
The second step if you’ve determined that there is a problem is to name the problem. Sit down and reason out what exactly the problem is. Is it a solvable problem, or is it an unsolvable situation?
I encourage you to name the problem so you can determine the best way to solve it or if you can solve it.
Step 3 – What Are My Goals for This Problem?
The third and final step is to determine your goals. If you’ve determined that there is a problem and you’ve named the problem, you must set goals for the problem.
Let’s take an example. What if you wanted money for a new car, but your credit score was very low? That might be a problem because you might not be able to afford the interest rate on a loan, or you might not be able to secure the loan.
Seeing that as a problem, what are your goals to eliminate that problem? One goal might be to raise your credit rating. Could you do that in the amount of time you had before you needed to purchase the car? Another goal might be to ask someone to cosign to help you get the loan. Goals give you specific steps to overcome any problem you may be experiencing.
What if the Problem Can’t Be Solved?
Here’s the heart of the question of this blog post. Some problems may be difficult, but we can often find ways to solve them if we just reasonably consider them. This might mean taking some time to breathe and reduce worry before proceeding.
But what do you do if the problem can’t be solved?
Many years ago, I realized the goal in dealing with situations that I didn’t know how to overcome was to think expansively. I knew that I must watch for contractive thinking. I realized that we have more expansive than contractive in our lives.
I asked myself, “How do I stay awake enough to notice my own thoughts?”
I sat and pondered this question because I knew that I had to notice what I was noticing in order to manifest my vision for my life. But I wasn’t doing it consistently.
At that point in my skill set, noticing wasn’t a pattern yet. I wasn’t noticing what I was noticing. More often than not, I was not noticing what I was noticing.
Wherever you are in this journey, your goal must be to notice what you’re noticing MOST of the time. If you notice what you are noticing, the way you think, your feelings, your mood, you can make little adjustments.
If you constantly pay attention to your thoughts, you fine-tune what you’re thinking so that you can make sure it’s expansive. That begins with your thoughts.
Ask yourself, “How can I stay awake enough to notice what I’m noticing more often?”
When I asked myself that question, years ago, the thought dropped into my head.
Door handles, drawer handles, sink handles, toilet handles, car door handles, computer handles — handles are everywhere.
I felt the cool metal of the door handle as my fingers touched it. There was a gentle give of the lever as the lock disengaged from the mechanism within the door frame, allowing me to swing it wide open.
“How am I handling my own thinking?”
It was a beautiful and simple reminder for me. I made a conscious choice to pause with every handle, doorknob, and lever, to notice what I was noticing.
As I moved into the kitchen to fix a snack, I paused as my fingers twined around the handle on my cabinet.
What am I thinking? How am I feeling? What am I noticing? How am I handling my own thinking?
I walked through the kitchen to take my snack out to the patio to enjoy a beautiful blue sky morning. As I reached to unlatch the door, the gold handle served as a reminder. Instead of opening the door without a thought, I paused to notice what I was noticing.
Later that morning, I hurried to my car, late for an appointment. When I slid my hand in to pull the car door open, my mind said, “How are you handling your thinking?
”This didn’t come automatically for me. The first day, I might have forgotten to stop to notice what I was noticing half of the times that I used a handle. When I really started paying attention, I realized I turned many knobs and handles in my day.
But the second day, I did much better with my noticing. On the third day, I improved more than that.
I practiced how to handle a problem constantly until it was second nature for me. It took time and commitment to invest in noticing my own thoughts every single time I touched a handle, but it worked.
Every time you touch a handle, let that be a reminder to question, “How are you handling your own thinking?”
That’s where your real powerhouse is; in your thoughts.
What does this have to do with problems you can’t solve?
Your mind, noticing what you’re noticing, is how you control your own thoughts and your vibrations. While you can’t control other people or situations, you are the only person who can think your thoughts. Your ability to choose how you feel and what you keep as a vision will help you overcome any circumstance or condition.
Learn How Being Stronger Than Circumstance Can Help You Navigate Any Problem
Each one of us faces difficult times. We sometimes struggle with situations beyond our control. We might have obstacles in any of the quadrants of our lives — health and wellbeing, time and money freedom, love and relationships, and vocation.
When you steady yourself with breathing and calm your stress, you can work through the three steps to determine if you have a problem, what the problem is, and what your goals are for that problem. Sometimes, there are problems that have no solution.
When we’re faced with circumstances that are out of our hands, we must notice what we’re noticing to keep our vision aligned with our ultimate dreams. This is a practice that doesn’t happen overnight. It took me many years to develop the skill set to do this continuously, and I am still on the growing edge.
My free eBook, Stronger Than Circumstance can help you on your journey! Through this resource, you’ll learn three proven strategies to overcome your limitations, fears, and procrastination to finally achieve your dreams.
Download it today as my gift to you.
Think Bravely and Act Boldly!