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Conquering Fear and Anxiety: Developing Resilience

Rachel Edri became a national hero because of the strength of her composure and not giving room for fear and anxiety even in extreme adverse situation as that of being held as a hostage in her own house. There is a sloka in Bhagavad Gita which extols four values that would make a devotee dear to Lord Krishna. These values apply to leaders as well.

यस्मान्नोद्विजते लोको लोकान्नोद्विजते च य: | हर्षामर्षभयोद्वेगैर्मुक्तो य: स च मे प्रिय - Bhagavad Gita 12.15

Translation – Lord Krishna to Arjun:

Those who are not a source of annoyance to anyone and who in turn are not agitated by anyone, who are equal in pleasure and distress, and are free from fear and anxiety, such devotees are very dear to Me.

Conquering Fear and Anxiety: Developing Resilience

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Not a Source of Annoyance to Anyone

Positive thoughts soften the mind and makes the outlook gentler in the dealings with the outside world. I mentioned in an earlier episode that kindness and gratitude are two of the seven established leadership traits (as that of the seven leadership qualities of Lord Rama in Valmiki Ramayana). One practicing kindness and gratitude as traits would not think of creating annoyance to anyone.

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Not Agitated by Anyone

One who is determined can never be hurt by others. Overflowing enthusiasm and determination prepare one to face any difficulty thrown at them, thus they cannot be disturbed by whatever trouble given to them. They can never be put down and they never get agitated.

Equability

With their inexhaustible positive attitude, people take pleasure and distress, success and failure with the same poise. They don’t get put down by failures and do not become complacent with success. They do not grieve on distress and similarly do not overjoy on pleasure. They are aware that pleasure and pain, success and failure are inevitable with the flow of life, just like the passing summer and winter seasons.

Free from Fear and Anxiety

Bhaya is fear and udvega is anxiety. Fear and Anxiety when combined is deadly and makes life miserable. Both fear and anxiety are powerful emotions as they create very strong effect on the mind as well as the body. Are they the same or different?

Difference between Fear and Anxiety

Fear is a natural reaction to events that put you under pressure whereas Anxiety is fears about the threat of something going wrong in the future, rather than right now.

Anxiety zaps enthusiasm. Anxiety creates pressure on the mind. Anxiety holds you back from doing the things you want or need to do and that can affect your health as well.

Fear and anxiety are something that we all experience now and then. It is only when it is severe and long-lasting that it can become a mental health problem. Some are anxious all the time and about everything and that is a sure recipe for troubles.

“The only thing we have to fear is fear itself”

Swami Vivekananda highlighted the essence of courage thus:

"Be not afraid of anything. You will do marvellous work. The moment, you fear, you are nobody. It is fear that is the great cause of misery in the world."

Arise, Awake!! Stop not till the goal is reached.

River’s Fear

Gentle river merges with a mighty ocean and it is natural for a river to enter the ocean and become the ocean, River cannot get afraid of the ocean and turn back.

"Nobody can go back. To go back is impossible in existence."
Khalil Gibran in his poem FEAR?

What a beautiful imagination and motivational thought.

It is said that before entering the sea a river trembles with fear.

She looks back at the path she has traveled, from the peaks of the mountains, the long winding road crossing forests and villages.

And in front of her, she sees an ocean so vast, that to enter there seems nothing more than to disappear forever.

But there is no other way. The river cannot go back.

Nobody can go back. To go back is impossible in existence.

The river needs to take the risk of entering the ocean because only then will fear disappear, because that’s where the river will know it’s not about disappearing into the ocean, but of becoming the ocean.

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Jaganathan T
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Jaganathan T
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