Thoughts on a Life Lead by Fear
Pinpointing everything that gets in the way of our move towards fulfillment and peace of mind, Rumi, a 13th-century Persian poet and Sufi mystic, wrote an ideal that makes perfect sense, and one of the many concepts that are discussed within psychotherapy, the idea of fear-based actions. "Don't move the way fear makes you move," he wrote. The idea is global and all encompassing, particularly as we move through our life encountering intense struggle after struggle, conflict after conflict. It's difficult to know how to react, or even think about reactions before engaging. Finding our way through the deep forest of fear without acting from a place of historical triggering is the ultimate pathway forward. It is what will give us access to positive action, a more solid self-awareness, and a calming sense of peace.
This is where Therapy can help, as it is the process of engagement, diving into our past in order to understand a way to stay in our 'here and now' present with empathy, connection, and grace. In Rumi's poem, "Keep Walking", the writer urges us to look at each day as an opportunity, a blank slate to write out all that we are curious about and to open ourselves up to the understanding of others and ourselves. It's a place of peace and compassion. Which, I will say right here, is not an easy thing to do, but through therapy, together we work on taking those difficult steps forward. A much stronger approach, rather than holding on to old patterns of fear-based coping mechanisms, ones that might have worked when we were young, but as an adult, they are consistently clogging up our present with complicated and unhelpful reactions. Through talk therapy, we can set those strategies aside, and approach our conflicts from a new and more open perspective, without the past muddling it all up for us.