Bias: Fear and Pain

There is a great phenomenon that takes place when we simplify our life and break down all the complications and intimidations which stand in our way. Suddenly, the elephant in the room isn’t around or so uncomfortable anymore. The big bad wolf isn’t so big or bad. And we see things clearer now.
There is an amazing aftermath that takes place after we deactivate the distractions that grow in our mind, like weeds that suffocate the roots of our dreams, goals, plans and restrict the strategies we’d used to achieve them.

There is a popular saying which has outdated us all and perhaps translates the same way from any language.
The saying is, “It’s all in your head.”

The mind is a truly incredible thing. We can see things here. We can remember experiences and instances. We can build choices and make decisions. We can smell something that takes us back to a good or happy memory like say, the smell of warm apple pie of a good home cooked meal. For example the smell of a honeysuckle bush can associate one with the hints and suggestion of spring.
We can hear a song that releases the chemical reaction that comes with nostalgia. Immediately, we feel an old rush that takes us back to an old memory. We have these connections to our past and past experiences. We can see an old picture or a sign, or symbol, or something that links us to a memory from a different time and opens the doorway to different thoughts and feelings.

There is something amazing that happens here. Our mind floods through the categories of memories and feelings, which we connect to the change in our emotions. We can associate our thinking with different pleasantries or, on the opposite end, we can associate them with something that we find problematic or threatening. 

For example, there was a small doctor’s office in a little building in Forest Hills, New York. The office had a little wooden rocking horse. There was a small table in the center of the room with different children’s books and magazines. There was perhaps one toy on top of the table, which wasn’t so much of a toy. It was more like something to keep a child occupied by sliding different colored wooden pieces across a metal wire that bent and curled. And the object here was to move all the colored wooden pieces from one side of the wire to the other. 

The walls were white and the waiting room had beige furniture. The color of the wooden accents and the table was a shade of pine, which was not bright at all. Instead, there was something dim about this room.
I can see this perfectly because this was the waiting room in a doctor’s office from my early childhood. In this description is my recollection along with the countless inaccuracies that come from the childhood mind.

There was a specific smell to this office, which I associate with fear. I say fear because without fail, each time I was in this office, I received a shot. Therefore, I associate this as a place that links me to pain. For all my life, I have had a terrible fear of needles. In fact, I discuss this in many of my presentations, which results in a laugh because I am also heavily tattooed.
To this day, I can feel the surge within me. I am still afraid of needles; or perhaps, no. It is the anticipation of the pain and the over-exaggerated memories from when I was chased around the office, held down, and then injected.
This is a fear that stems from earlier memories that have transformed and morphed into much bigger monstrous things. And while yes, needles still pinch and getting a shot still sucks, the pain is nothing like the anticipation. In fact, the pain isn’t so bad at all.
Instead, my thoughts go directly to an old childhood bias of fear.
I am afraid of pains which I hardly remember. I can remember the doctor’s office. I can remember the smell and I can remember the emotion. However, I cannot remember one shot or injection. Instead, I remember the dishonesty and the insult of the dishonesty when the doctor said, “This isn’t going to hurt,” which it did hurt.
Apparently the shot hurt me enough as a small boy to carry the trauma for as long as I have and lead me to an irrational fear of needles. (Can you see where I’m going with this?)

In which case, I have built up a series of exaggerated thoughts and memories that are not accurate nor as painful as I remember. Plus, “I’m a big boy now,” which is what the doctor used to tell me after the injection was over.

I use this example because the mind is truly an incredible thing. We file away our memories and associations as a means to keep ourselves safe and free from pain and fear. However, same as the mind exaggerates the memories from my childhood doctor visits, I have learned that my mind does the same thing with other expectations. I have other subconscious programs and biases, and much like all of us, I have judgments that lead me towards a critical belief on this behalf. 

This is where we build our assumptions. This is where and why we jump to conclusions. This is where and why anxiety, panic and stress come to the surface. This is why we behave or act preemptively because we base our judgements and/or our opinions on personal prejudice, predictions and biases.

Our thinking has the ability to create anxiety, which in turn, can cause our fear receptors to overreact and release too much calcium. Therefore it is possible to think yourself into being sick; as in to be afflicted with ill health, nausea and/or a headache. The mental is in fact connected to the physical. And there is an incredible freedom and phenomenon which we encounter when we learn to dispel the myths, subconscious thinking and biases that have blocked us from reaching our next best level.

One by one, if we were to rid ourselves of the irrational fears we have of the monsters underneath the bed or the fears we had of the dark, imagine the energy we could channel and offer to our daily lives?
If we were able to dispel the myths and rid ourselves of inaccurate phobias and the different social anxieties that exist in our mind, what would this lead us to? 
Imagine if we could think in a forward sense instead of reverting back to past experiences that disallow us from learning new programs of experience, what would this allow us to do?
Imagine the freedom we would find if we were able to taste new foods without old opinions. Imagine old fears no longer being a factor. Or, imagine this; if our thoughts can make us sick and physically uncomfortable, then it must be true that our thoughts can make us well and feel incredible as well. Imagine how impenetrable we would feel if we only allowed ourselves to believe this way.

There is an amazing phenomenon that takes place when we release ourselves from the old contracts of our past. This is what happens when we allow us to look for new opportunities and claim our future. Imagine life without unnecessary fear. Think about how much we could accomplish if we deactivated the thought machine and stopped the judgements we come to.

I had my second dose of the vaccine a few weeks back. There was a familiar smell in the hospital, which I associate with fear and danger. I felt the initial stir that comes with old fears.
The nurse told me I took my shot like a big boy. I smiled. In fact, I’m smiling now as I write this to you.

Know why?
Well, first it’s because I’m a big boy now. Secondly, and more importantly, I was able to dispel an old fear of pain and danger. I stopped the overreaction before the reaction took place. Rather than sit in my fears, I gave myself the permission to enter a new experience without any judgements from my past.

Imagine doing this across the board with all fears?
I think we’d be able to take on the world!

I think; therefore, I am.
And that’s all we need.


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