The word anticipation reminds me of fear.
That’s because whenever I was, or thought I would be in a situation where I’d be forced to face my fears, I always anticipated being afraid even before I was actually in said circumstances.
Being alone in a dark room is one of my most crippling (and irrational) fears. I always tried to avoid this situation by making sure I had a room mate with me. That was easy, because our hostel accommodates three people in a room, and I usually had at least one another person to keep me company.
But this semester, I got allotted to a room for two, and when my room mate disappeared for three days at a stretch, I knew I had to put up with the situation. I could have asked for some other class mate to move into my room for that duration, but I decided I’d had enough. It couldn’t be that bad, I told myself.
And so it began!
Long story short, I did survive those three nights and managed undisturbed sleep. My vivid imagination painted scary pictures every time I switched off the lights, but it failed to have effect on me because of two reasons:
- I’d understood that they were the product of some primal fear, and hence imaginings of a mind that is intent upon survival.
- I was dead tired. I’d worked myself mentally and physically that week, so when I plopped into bed and closed my eyes I just wanted to sleep.
It is an idle mind that has the resources to instill fear, because it is free to do so. Most, if not all of our fears are a product of our own minds.
Else, why do these fears intensify right after I watch a horror movie?
Understand fear. Understand what causes it, for it’s at the root we have to strike if we’ve to get rid of anything.
Once you’ve done your understanding, find a rational explanation that you can use to reassure yourself whenever this fear crops up. This takes practice. Whenever the situation arises, ready yourself for it, because if you don’t you’ll just be a slave to that fear forever. Take away that power from your fear, and you conquer it.
Then you rule yourself, just as you always should.