Last night, as I was working on my computer, a shadow in the shape of a mouse scurried across my apartment and under the couch.
Naturally, I screamed bloody murder and jumped on a chair for rescue.
Only there was no one to help me. 😩
So in a panic, I FaceTimed my friend Caroline and asked her what to do. (It was more of a whine / cry / shrilled plea than a simple “ask”, but I digress).
Since a panicked brain can NOT see calmly through panic. I relied on Caroline to do the thinking for me.
She calmly and lovingly told me to move the couch and ensure there was nothing there, or deal with whatever was there, or I’d never sleep that night. I knew she was right.
But I couldn’t do it. I was literally FROZEN in fear.
I know how this feelings stuff works. I know it’s my thoughts that are creating my fear.
What were my thoughts?
🤢 It’s going to crawl on my feet
🤢 It’s disgusting
🤢 It makes me uncomfortable
🤢 It doesn’t belong here
NONE of these thoughts were actually putting me in ANY sort of danger, yet I still felt literally frozen in fear.
And then, after a while of gentle prodding, a thought popped into my brain.
🙌🏻 I’ve done way harder things than this 🙌🏻
And my mind flashed with all the hard and scary things I’ve done in my lifetime (lived with T1D for 43 years, left my safe career to become a life coach, quit drinking, and so on).
🙌🏻 I’ve done way harder things than this. And I felt just brave enough to DO it.
With many squeaks and squeals (and Caroline chanting “move that couch! Move that couch!”). I did it.
There was nothing there, by the way. I still don’t know if it was a shadow, the mouse went into the wall, or it was my mind playing tricks on me.
But I know a few things:
✔️Fear is not always rational and that’s ok. It was real to me.
✔️It helps to think a thought that makes you feel just a little less scared
✔️You can be scared, and still do it anyway
✔️Really REALLY good friends can be your calm brain for you when you can’t think for yourself. And they don’t laugh at you when you’re scared of a tiny little phantom mouse! They help you and encourage you anyway ❤️
Need help learning how to be scared and do it anyway? Reach out, I can help!