Life is dangerous, and we can never be 100% sure of anything. There is risk, and there is danger. Anxiety exists to protect us from danger—but often it comes at a cost that is more painful than the feared event itself. In this video I talk about making the shift from anxious living to fearless living.
“To venture causes anxiety, but not to venture is to lose oneself”— Soren Kierkegaard
Today we’re talking about the real price for anxiety and what you can do about it.
Hey there, meditator! Welcome to episode #85 of Master Your Mind Daily, your daily source of inspiration for all things pertaining to meditation, anxiety and personal growth.
My name is Giovanni Dienstmann. I am the author of Practical Meditation and the creator of LiveAndDare.com, one of the top five most-read meditation blogs on the web.
From Anxious Living to Fearless Living
Anxiety is that voice in us that emphasizes danger, emphasizes risk.
When we see the world through the eyes of danger and risk we feel afraid, we worry, we hold back and we stay stuck. We get attached to a sense of comfort and we don’t want to push our limits, but that is a recipe for living an average life. It’s a recipe for regret; it’s not a recipe for fulfilling your dreams and aspirations.
Anxiety wants to hold you back until you’re safe, until it’s safe to proceed. But the problem is that you’re never going to feel that it’s 100% safe to proceed, and therefore the more you have anxiety—the more you listen to the voice of anxiety—the more you will feel stuck and don’t move forward.
This all makes it really hard for you to enjoy your life and to experience deeper fulfillment. This is the problem.
Anxiety is this voice that holds us back. What do we do about it? We flip the problem on its head instead of holding back because of fear. How? You move forward.
You move forward because you can, and because you trust that no matter what happens you’ll be able to deal with it. You will survive and come out stronger and wiser; you move forward not because you know for sure that there’s no risk—that’s never going to be the case—but because you would rather practice fearless living than anxious living.
You move forward because being stuck is worse than the danger. Anxiety is trying to save you from being stuck.
The pain of regret and frustration… The pain of that emotional limitation, of not being able to move forward and do the things you want… that is a bigger pain than the embarrassment or the loss that you may have if you move forward.
The more you reflect like this, the more you’ll be able to slowly shift your mindset from fearful living to fearless living. If you want some help in this, I recommend you join my Calm and Free course. It’s very affordable, and it’s very short. You can do it in one hour and it will teach you three powerful techniques to overcome anxiety and live more courageously.
A Deep Mindset Shift
This is a change of mindset, and changing mindset takes time—but it is possible.
Whatever is your worldview, whatever are the lenses through which you see the world, you can change that. You’ve simply gotten used to it. These are the beliefs, the mindsets that you adopted from other people, from society, from your parents. You know how to function through them even though they don’t necessarily make you happy.
They don’t help you fulfill your aspirations, but you are safe and comfortable; and now I’m inviting you to do this mindset change, and in the beginning, the new mindset—the bolder and more self-confident mindset—will feel fake. But here is where the skills of meditation come into play.
In meditation you are told to focus your attention on an object of your choice. It could be your breath, it could be a mantra, it could be a chakra, it could be a feeling—anything. Then, whenever your attention wanders away, you simply bring it back again and again, as many times as it happens, and that will develop the “muscle” of awareness and the muscle of willpower in you.
Now let’s apply these meditation skills to your daily life.
When you notice during your day that you are believing in a story, or having a mindset that is not helpful for you, you then create a new mindset, a new way of looking things that is helpful for you. Thus you apply this skill of meditation and again and again.
Let go of the old and bring your attention back to the new. I often talk about the law of attention. It says that that which you pay attention to will come into existence and grow, and that which you withdraw your attention from will wane and disappear. So the old way of looking at things (the anxious way of going about life) slowly loses power and disappears, and the new way—more comfortable, more confident, more peaceful—that one becomes stronger and stronger. Eventually it becomes your new default.
For that you need to practice repeatedly; you can practice your new mindset as an affirmation. Create an affirmation for it. Practice it for two or three minutes every morning after your meditation. And remind yourself of that affirmation multiple times during the day. There is much more to it, and If you want to learn this more deeply, you can join my course, but this is the first step.
In summary: whenever we take a step forward in life, whenever we do something risky, there is anxiety. But if you don’t do anything and stay stuck—afraid, anxious and worried—that is worse.
That’s a worse pain than anxiety.
So the invitation today, and perhaps for the rest of your life (if you’re up for it), is to choose to practice fearless living, not anxious living; to choose to stretch yourself, your limits, and to move forward in the things that are important for you.
Not because you know that it’s 100% safe—it will never be. But because you can, and because you trust yourself. You trust that whatever happens, whatever life throws at you, you’ll be able to create something good out of it.
Thank you for watching, and if you’re eager to move forward in this path, then join my Calm and Free mini-course.
If you know anyone, a friend or a family member who needs to hear this message, then please forward this page.
Thank you for watching, and happy growing! 🙏🏻