Page 1 of 1

The Self Imposed Prison of Fear

PostPosted: April 8th, 2013, 10:09 am
by SecretAgentMan
A recent conversation inspired me to write a quick post about the artificial prison that we construct for ourselves in our own minds, and that prison is fear. What is fear and where does it come from? While it is likely genetic that we have a 'fight or flight' sense hard-wired into our brains specifically for self-preservation, fear itself is an emotion that we feel in response to thought patterns over scenarios we do not want to happen. If thought patterns over things that we do not want to happen bring us unhappiness, stress, and worry, why do we dwell on them for such long periods of time? It's as though our minds learn patterns of thought and repeat them. Patterns form habbits and before we know it we find ourselves stuck in a loop of negative emotions that bring us nothing but misery. Most people who even make this realization feel hopeless to change because they do not know how. The fears keep coming back and they feel like a victim of their own minds.

If you imagine the loop of thoght patterns and fear as a metaphorical prison that you construct for yourself, you as the observer see the walls and bars surrounding you. The illusion that fear portrays to you is intimidating. The bars and the walls seem solid by their appearance. Its easy to feel hopeless and to remain in that prison cell because of that fear and the psychological effects it has on you. There is a secret though. That secret is that you are the creator of that prison and you always have the power to walk out of it. The door doesn't lock! Why sit in the dingy cell when the view is much better outside? All it takes is a realization that you have the power to change your perspective. You can choose to remain in the cell and stay in fear, or you can choose to shift your perspective to something positive, essentially walking out of that prison.

Your pattern of thoughts are reinforcing you perception. Consciously shift your habitual pattern of thoughts and your perception will change. It's a gradual process. You'll have to maintain your focus on something positive and keep walking toward it. Distracting yourself and focusing on something negative will just lead you back to that prison cell. What you focus on, you will walk towards. Keep this effort up for a long enough period of time and before you know it your pattern of thoughts will learn a new habit, a positive loop of thoughts rather than a negative one. Your mind can always learn new tricks. Hypnosis, self-hypnosis, and meditation are all techniques to help reinforce positive thought patterns. Just remember, what you focus on you walk towards. Quit staring at the prison walls in your cell and start heading for the door! If you get distracted and look back a lot at first that's fine. The more you focus on the door, the closer you will get to it and the less you'll look back. You won't walk your way out in a day, but the sooner you start walking the sooner you'll get there.

I hope this metaphor has helped give some an analogy to visualize the contrast of thought patterns. I'm a visual kind of person. Imagine it any way you like. Fear is just an illusion and its up to you to realize this and leave it behind. Don't give it power over your life.