Seasons and moments of anxiety come unexpectedly. They trample us underfoot. My anxieties come generally with an overload of issues, always seemingly important. But these issues are usually symptoms revealing a deeper cause.
Practically, though, the deeper cause is irrelevant in the moment of panic. A more short-term priority is at hand — to beat the stridency of the anxious instant that threatens to overwhelm our entire inner worlds.
What can we do?
1. Revert consciously to the reasonable mind. When we think about the power of the conscious mind we can actually control a lot of things we think about. But we can only do this if we’re consciously aware of the power we have to change our minds. From the negative or damaging mindset we shift into a positive, rational mindset. Having done this we’ve managed the moment, and we have a way of managing all the individual moments as part of a series of moments sequentially connected.
2. Transform thinking to the humorous mindset. Many people who struggle with anxiety or depression find it impossible to be humorous. But to understand that humour brings relativity into our lives is itself a power to be reckoned with. Humour works quite miraculously if it can be afforded.
3. Understand the heart that underpins the mind. Up until now we’ve spoken about the mind and its power, but these subjects are always betrayed until we understand that the heart plays the pivotal role. The heart retains the deeper cause. We simply enquire of it, praying to God for insight into the mysteries of our hearts. Soon the knowledge of insight will come. Then we can deal with it.
4. Gentleness with ourselves is crucial. Keeping things as simple and structured as we can helps us be ordered and, therefore, patient. We’re blessed to know our inner flaws — those things that make us anything but gentle with ourselves. Self-awareness is the inspiration of action. Reverting to simple fixes that calm the panicked vessel within will be rewarded.
Power of the Reasonable Mind
All of these suggestions above reinforce the importance of staying ourselves in the mode of the reasonable mind.
This is to be rational, responsible, realistic, logical and reasonable; to think is to be.
The more we can manually flip our thinking back to these, keeping life simple in the process, the more we find God empowering us to change our minds.
When we realise that changing our minds is a capability we all have, the theory of freedom from bondage is known. Then it’s a matter of having the discipline to practice it.
The more continually we engage with this awareness, the more we can respond.
Anxiety and Faith
Overcoming anxiety — the series of anxious moments all threaded together or intermittently — is the meeting of the mind in truth-filled rationality. What we can see we can believe.
Even better to believe in those good things we cannot see; those we know to be truths.
© 2011 S. J. Wickham.