“What is needed, rather than running away or controlling or suppressing or any other resistance, is understanding fear; that means watch it, learn about it, come directly into contact with it. We are to learn about fear, not how to escape from it.” 


*(Copyright 2013, Brian Whetten, used with permission)


When we experience fear or other “negative” emotions (i.e., shame, guilt, doubt, anger), we tend to react in one of three ways: fight, flee or feed. When we fight our fears, we attach to them and try to overcome them, such as by invalidating them or trying to push our way through them.


When we flee from our fears, we avoid them as a way of trying to make them go away. We may go into denial, or do something to distract ourselves. We may numb out, or consume something that momentarily makes us feel better.


When we feed our fears, we give them energy, focus on them, and indulge in them. We may play the victim, or beat ourselves up as a way of creating even more of the short-term rush that comes from stress and negative energy.


The problem is that all three of these choices involve meeting fear with fear, and over time this only makes our anxieties worse.


In contrast, accepting our fear is an act of love. It’s a gift of care. It’s a different response. At times it can feel weak or foreign. But accepting our fear is one of the most powerful and courageous decision we can make.


Fear’s job is not to stop us. It’s to warn us. Like all our voices, and all our different emotions, it has a positive purpose behind everything it does. Each and every aspect, of each and every person, is trying to achieve a positive purpose in the best way it knows how.


The problem is that sometimes, even with the most positive of intentions, our less conscious aspects create less-than-positive results.


So let’s get curious. What is the voice of fear trying to communicate?


Take a deep breath, go within and connect with your highest wisdom. Set your intentions for this exercise. If it’s comfortable ask your spirit, or higher guide, or best intuitive self for assistance. When you are ready, begin.


Start by feeling the fear in your body. Where does this fear reside? Place a hand there and set the intention to connect with the voice of fear from a place of acceptance and understanding. Ask the voice of fear, “What are you feeling? What do you want to share with me?”

Voice of Fear:


Ask your voice of fear,  “What are you trying to warn me about? What are you trying to protect me from?”

Voice of Fear:


Ask your voice of fear,  “What are you afraid it would mean if that happened? What is the worst-case scenario that you’re worried about?”

Voice of Fear:


Ask your voice of fear, “What is your positive purpose? How are you serving me the best way you know how?”

Voice of Fear:


Ask your voice of fear, “In addition to safety, what other positive goals or outcomes are you trying to help me create?”

Voice of Fear:

Give appreciation and acceptance to your voice of fear. “I appreciate your positive purpose, and I’m grateful for how hard you’ve been working to help me meet these goals the best way you know how.”


Ask your voice of fear, “Would you be willing to work together with me, as friends, to move forward with these goals in ways that might feel scary at times, and would also be safe?”
Voice of Fear:

Ask your voice of fear, “What would you need or want from me in order to work with me more effectively?
Voice of Fear:

Ask your voice of fear, “Is there anything else you want to share with me?”
Voice of Fear:

Conclude by genuinely thanking your voice of fear and praising it for its efforts. Then notice… what has shifted inside of you? How are you feeling now?