There’s a lot going on this week. People are scared for their health and things are shifting by the second. Profound changes are happening in our world.
And, there’s a lot of fear everywhere.
Fear is especially challenging for food addicts to deal with. Those in recovery, are used to turning to food to soothe their fears. Those who are not yet in recovery may not even recognize how fearful they are.
The answer to both is knowing. I don’t mean in a religious sort of way but in a knowing that things will be okay. Sometimes when it seems as if the world is spinning out of control, it’s easy to forget that what we are worrying about today will pass and life will go on, maybe in a different way, but it will continue.
One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned in my own recovery is that if I “act as if” something is true then ultimately it works out that way, whether it’s positive or negative in my life.
If I act as if the world is ending then, while the world may not end in reality, in my mind, I will experience the stress of this as if it were real.
If I act as if I know that things will work out and be okay then, in my mind, I will experience a calm knowing that will benefit me in more ways than I can imagine. This doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t take prudent precautions to stay healthy but that we should expand these precautions to include our mental health as well.
Rather than obsessively watching news reports about how quickly the virus is spreading, we can choose to take a break and go outside to breathe in fresh air. Instead of constantly talking or thinking about the dangers of the virus, we can take a few minutes to do yoga or meditate. If the fear feels overwhelming, we can take a walk, ride our bicycles or do some other form of physical exercise.
Today, we have a choice about whether or not to experience extreme fear or the calm knowing that gives us serenity.