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Melli O'Brien



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Love and Fear

Personalized support for learning how to integrate mindfulness into your life. Delivered fresh everyday by our world renowned experts. Choose meditation duration:

Hi, and welcome to your Daily Mindfulness.

You know, it's been said that

there are only two basic motivating

forces in life, love and fear.

Our primal minds often

default to the latter.

And perhaps the greatest gift of

mindfulness is that it offers us the

choice to step out of the conditioning of

the mind and find our center in awareness

and let our actions flow from love.

Now, while fear is a perfectly natural

emotion, when it takes us over, it

often hijacks our ability to act

with awareness, purpose, and clarity.

So how do we learn to face fears

in a healthy way so they no

longer define us or hold us back?

I would argue we can

do this in three steps.

Step one, name it, to tame it.

So when you feel fear arising, whether

it's in the form of self-doubt, worry,

you know, that fear that you're not

enough, that unworthiness or social

anxiety or any form of fear, soon as

you recognize that you just mentally

note to yourself, ah, fear is here.

Research shows that simply naming

the emotion makes us less reactive

to it and can actually reduce the

intensity of the emotion by up to 50%.

The next step, thank the fear.

It's in our primal human nature for

our minds to want to protect us.

So if the mind detects a threat of

any kind, it might start to make a

lot of noise in the form of fear.

So you can think of your mind as

being like your inner security guard.

It's just trying to protect you.

So this inner security guard might

want to turn on sirens and make a

lot of noise to get your attention.

The more you ignore that noise, the more

you ignore the fear, the louder it gets.

It's only when you turn towards that

inner security guard, acknowledge that you

heard the warning, thank him for doing a

great job, that he will then know he can

relax and turn off the warning systems.

So this is how we want to work with fear.

By thanking the fear, you're doing

the psychological equivalent of

thanking that inner guard, telling

him I'm aware of what's happening.

You know, you've done your job.

You can relax now.

Step three is to act with love.

So in this step, you connect

with your core values and what

matters to you deep in your heart.

So you might ask yourself, what

would it look like to take actions

guided by love and not fear?

Maybe that would mean moving

towards a goal you really

care about despite the fear.

Maybe it would mean asking someone

on a date, helping someone who needs

support, and perhaps it would be taking

better care of your body and mind.

It might mean taking actions guided

by your values, by integrity,

courage, compassion, or patience.

Whatever that looks like, I'll leave

that exploration up to you, the main

thing is to switch the focus out of the

energy of fear and reconnect with love.

So there's three steps, name

it to tame it, thank the

mind, and then act with love.

So this is the invitation

for, for practice to work

with our fears in this way.

And as always thank you for your

practice and your presence here.

And now let's settle

in today's meditation.

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