“No passion so effectually robs the mind of all its powers of acting and reasoning as fear.” Edmund Burke, 1756

How often have you dealt with hard choices related to your work or personal life that require decisions that do not guarantee that you will be successful in the path you might choose? How often have you failed to act or delayed a decision because of the fear that you might not choose wisely? How often has your fear of the unknown or lack of assurance of success stymied you and led you to regret opportunities missed? All of us must deal often with the hesitations and doubts that stem from relatively constant sources of anxiety and dread that we lead ourselves to believe are the product of outside forces that we lack the confidence to confront. We may not be certain of the nature of the threats or even that they are real, but our emotional state is impacted in such a way that these perceptions govern our actions and create misgivings about our ability to trust ourselves and to be confident in our personal decisions and choices. If confronted by a real threat, our fear may allow us to act wisely and avoid danger, as when we encounter a rabid dog or avoid a downed electrical wire; but consider the number of times such real events occur versus the daily fears we harbor about our perceptions of threats or perceptions of possible negative outcomes of our actions. Imagined fears, the distress of possible failure, and anxiety about the unknown are far more prevalent in our lives than all of the real threats we may encounter in a lifetime. Imagine a life where one might distinguish between true outward threats and the fears that are engendered in the inner chambers of our mind. Imagine replacing fear with a confidence in decisive action and finding inner strength in knowing that your decision may or may not provide the immediate results that you seek but that you will have moved forward and are not restricted by personal doubt. Acquiring such fearlessness is possible and, in the quest for ascension, is essential. There is a way out of the shadow of fear and into the illuminated world of confident living.

In my work as a counselor and healer, I have found that the most insidious problems that individuals face stem most often from inner fears rather than outward threats. The anxieties and distress are real, but the sources of the fears that create such pain are often in the world of our negative imagination and are often hidden in the inner recesses of our subconscious. I distinguish this imagined world from that delightful place of imagination that creates positive energy and joyfulness. The comic George Carlin once joked, “There are nights when the wolves are silent and only the moon howls.” I believe that Carlin was a very wise soul who understood the impact of imagined threats and who recognized his own internal anxieties created by self-doubt. But this quote reveals that he was able to confront his fears and through his humor was able to master them.

The spirits have entreated me to find ways to instruct people in the ways of processing, confronting and overcoming fears. The spirits have made it clear that success might require a direct confrontation (to look fear in the eye, one might say) and to let the fear flow from you by means of an intentional action or, in some circumstances, not to confront the fear but to simply let it go with the recognition that it does not own you and that it can be released with ease. To achieve this trust in one’s personal worthiness, the will to let go of false fears, and the ability to act with fearless confidence, the spirits have taught me that there is a need for spiritual instruction and supervision.

Next month I will extrapolate the details of fear release explaining the action the spirits recommended. Meanwhile, please pay attention to your fears and write them down on a piece of paper. Make a list of them. The act of writing your fears down is qualitatively more advantageous than to contemplate them in your head. Writing helps to organize your thoughts and to perceive the fear point blank in front of you. Sometimes just this act alone will create a shift within.

Author's Bio: 

Jan Engels-Smith is a graduate of the Foundation of Shamanic Studies and has trained with individual shamans. She has had a thriving shamanic practice since 1994. She has performed over 3,000 soul retrievals and viewed as an expert in her field. She is an author, Shamanic Practitioner, Reiki Master, a Licensed Professional Counselor, a Chemical Dependency Specialist, a Marriage and Family Counselor a Hypnotherapist and a Reconnection Healer.

Jan founded the LightSong School of Shamanic Studies, which has eight associate teachers and is the first of its kind to offer three accredited degrees in shamanism: Internship (IP), Licensed Master Practitioner (LMP) and Doctorate in Shamanism (ShD). You can learn more about these programs at http://www.lightsong.net.
Jan also conducts individual and group healing seminars for intensive personal growth.

Her training and experiences have been extensive both in the traditional philosophies and metaphysical traditions. Her personal philosophy is to assist individuals in gaining their own personal empowerment, which will in turn, promotes self healing, better communities and a healthier world.

Contact Jan at jan@lightsong.net or call 503-669-3013 (Portland, OR).

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