Fear and anxiety can often derail us in life. But, that doesn’t have to be the case. Trauma psychiatrist, Dr. Alauna Curry, believes that fear can actually become the fuel that propels you forward, towards the things that you’d like to accomplish. To help clients turn their fear and anxiety into positive action, Dr. Alauna enlists the following mantra and helpful exercise – Be DONE with trauma thinking.
D – Descriptive. What’s causing the fear? Is the fear based on an actual threat or a perceived one. It’s important to remember that feelings are not necessarily fact, so taking the time to assess whether your fear is proportional to the situation is important. Gathering as much information as possible about the situation that’s triggering the fear can help you pinpoint what’s really going on.
O – Objective. When in the midst of a full-on panic attack, it can be difficult and almost impossible to be objective. I get it. But, stepping back and trying to gauge the situation from another perspective is key. For example, is there anything else that might be going on? And is there any other information that you haven’t yet considered?
N – Non-judgmental. This one can be just as hard, if not harder than the objective piece above. In making an effort to understand your fear, it’s important to do it from a place of empathy and compassion towards yourself and others. It’s okay to feel fear. It’s okay to feel anxiety. Those feelings definitely don’t feel good, but the emotions themselves aren’t good or bad. They’re simply how you feel. When you’re able to acknowledge and accept that, it becomes a lot easier to move from feelings that hold you back to actions that move you forward.
E – Effective. What are effective actions that you can take to create the outcomes that you desire? Brainstorming concrete steps that you can take to address the very thing that’s causing you to feel unease in the first place can be wonderfully liberating and therapeutic. You didn’t get where you are in life by not taking decisive action. So, concentrate on the things that you can do to create the outcome that you want in the situation.