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How to Conquer your Fears

Do you have doubts about holding your job?
Do you worry over loss of money — or over the lack of money you need?
Does the dread of illness or of a nervous breakdown or of insanity haunt you?
Are broken friendships, repressed love affairs robbing you of health?


NEVER IN the history of the world have people enjoyed so many laborsaving devices, so much leisure, such benefits from public sanitation. Yet, strange to say, the fear of nervous disorders, heart disease, cancer and insanity is robbing millions of health and happiness.

People everywhere are under needless mental strain. Business pressure and family troubles worry millions. We don't know how to relax.

Why is there such anxiety, such nervous strain? Why are we FAILING to master our fears and worries?


An Age of MISMANAGED Minds

This is not alone the age of the atom and hydrogen bombs. This is the AGE OF MISMANAGED MINDS!

Uncontrolled, undirected minds are ruining the lives of countless thousands. Millions more are rendered miserable and unproductive because their minds have been enslaved to FEARS — needless, unreasoned fears!

Needless fears rob us of contentment, warp our personality, and poison both mind and body.

Fear is an emotion — an emotion directed toward the SELF. Have you ever noticed that those who suffer most from fear and worry are "wrapped up" in themselves? "I'm afraid of this . . ." and "I m worried about that . . ." is the way they talk.

This, then is a Selfish age! And the more we become concerned with ourselves, the more afraid we become that the self will get hurt. We become fearful of what might happen to the self. Our misdirected minds coddle and pamper the self.

In many instances this uncontrolled emotion of fear leads to grave consequences — to real desperation. There is the fear that "something is wrong with the brain" — that a nervous breakdown is impending, that even insanity might result.

In other instances this uncontrolled emotion results in feelings of inferiority, in mental inadequacy, in sex impotency. One fear leads to another until our mental outlook and our physical health are permanently impaired!

But there is a way to correct this problem. There is a way to conquer fear!


Are All Fears wrong?

For millenniums the problem of fear has confronted and perplexed our greatest thinkers. Philosophers have found no satisfactory solution — or their lives wouldn’t have been so often frustrated! Psychologists have spawned the idea of autosuggestion as the solution to overcoming fears. Those who have tried this method still find themselves spiritually devoid of happiness. Of course! For autosuggestion is a clever way of saying self-deception! And deception never solved anything.

Others have tried sedatives to relieve their nervous fears. Countless pills to calm nerves and keep people happy have been sold by druggists and doctors. But fears and worries and mental and physical illnesses still continue!

For us to reach the solution, we must recognize there are TWO fundamental types of fears: 1) helpful fears and 2) harmful fears.

Without normal, helpful fears none of us would be alive today! Proper fear is merely the drive for self-protection. Without this fear we would not exercise proper caution against injury.

It is the kind of fear we need!

But notice! When the mind is not properly managed, the natural fear for self-protection is turned into unnatural fears for the protection of SELF.



The control of the drive or emotion of fear is a learned process — it is a matter of education. We first need to learn what proper fear is. Then we need to exercise proper control over it. But we must also avoid misdirected and harmful fears.

Proper fear is wisdom. It is also knowledge. Suppose, for a moment, that we are confronted with a real danger. It is only natural that we should be fearful. But let's master our fears. Fear tells us something is wrong. It warns us that we must calmly and carefully face our danger. We must get busy and take ACTION. Action solves the danger! But simply worrying about it and being afraid that the worst will happen won't help us.

People who are chronic worriers who have countless fears, are usually procrastinators and indecisive. They are afraid to rake action. Their fears become their master. They become slaves to their fears.


But it is never too late to learn. Life is too important for us to remain in ignorance, no matter how old we are. Let's learn to DISTINGUISH between helpful and harmful fears.


Needless Fears and Phobias

Sometimes our fears are insignificant or even laughable — to the other fellow, of course. Here are some of the petty fears that plague people: fear of an expanse of water, fear of air travel, fear of silence, darkness, shadows in the moonlight, fear of telephone, telegrams, hunchbacks and mice!

These fears usually are the result of part experience which we have either consciously or subconsciously allowed to haunt us.

Usually far worse are the common phobias which afflict people abnormally. Fear of the sight of blood, fear of animals, fear of being alone, FEAR OF AN UNATTRACTIVE FIGURE, FEAR OF BEING AFRAID, and the FEAR OF FAILURE. To this list we might add the fear of everything, a characteristic of the person who runs away from life!

Underlying some of these abnormal phobias are normal fears. But in every case the normal, natural fear has been allowed to get OUT OF CONTROL. Witness the countless millions of girls and women who are afraid they have or may sometimes have an unattractive figure. Serious mental, emotional and physical injury has often been done to "remove" this fear. The worsened condition creates more fears. A vicious circle results.

Haven't you known people who were fearful of being afraid? They can't explain their fears, but they know something fearful is going to happen to them! They haven't learned the lesson of life that our worst fears and experiences NEVER HAPPENED!

Sometimes, however, we bring fears and worries on ourselves. Job wrote: "For the thing which I did fear is come upon me, and that which I was afraid of hath overtaken me" (Job 3:25). Many capable men and women have become failures simply by yielding to the uncontrolled FEAR OF FAILURE. Especially has this been true since two world wars and a catastrophic depression. This fear has led to the FEAR OF LACK OF SECURITY. Notice how one anxiety breeds another. These fears are all characteristic of lack of knowledge and lack of wisdom.

The CAUSE of these abnormal worries and fears lies in inadequate recognition and control of emotional problems we experience in maturation. Domineering parents, inconsiderate fathers, over-possessive mothers, family jealousies and arguments, fussy grandparents — these created most of our emotional problems. But the fundamental CAUSE of OUR fears is OUR failure to recognize and solve these emotional problems.


A Common Example

Here is an example of the consequences due to the failure to discipline our mental emotions. A young girl is engaged to be married. Instead of being happy, she is crushed with conflicts and fears. She is frightened with the responsibilities of married life and motherhood. A nervous breakdown seems inevitable. Why?

Usually in her background you will find a carefree father, a frustrated mother, spinster school teachers, no companions of her own age while an adolescent. Mental problems, unsolved, produced physical disturbances. Menstruation became abnormal and often painful. Fears of childbirth haunted her because of stories she heard from "friends." This is no isolated case. This is a COMMON EXAMPLE. Some of you are suffering from just such a problem as this.

Let's understand, now, why emotional disorders lead to physical disorders, as in the case just mentioned.

There is a direct mind-body relationship in every individual. We must direct and coordinate both mind and body before we can really achieve happiness and conquer our fears. Solomon understood this problem when he wrote: "A tranquil heart is the life of the flesh; but envy is the rottenness of the bones" (Pro. 14:30). And again, "Better is a dinner of herbs where love is, than a stalled ox and hatred therewith" (Pro. 15:17).

There is a direct connection of digestion and health with the mind. When the mind is fearful, it sends out messages to the various glands and organs to be prepared for danger. The organs fill the bloodstream with materials to enable us to ACT to meet the danger. When we procrastinate or are indecisive, our body becomes filled with unused material. Our glands are needlessly drained. Constant self-induced fears soon cause the glands to function abnormally. Our whole body suffers, and with it the personality and even the mind.

Unconquered fears are the cause of a major portion of diseases. Of course, proper food habits, proper exercise and elimination also play a part in overall health — both mental and physical.

When our bodies become filled with toxins that should have been used up in ACTION to meet real dangers, we find ourselves "nervous" and "upset." People often say: "It's my nerves." Nerves are not wrong. We need them to live. It is what we have done to our nerves that is the problem. We have frayed them through overuse arising from uncontrolled fears and worries. We have turned the nerve mechanism created for SELF-PROTECTION into a weapon for SELF-DESTRUCTION.


Frightful Dreams

When once we have created physical disorder in our body, the imagination begins to play tricks on us. Our imagination should be utilized to create new and better ideas. It is an instrument for progress. Instead, we let our imagination frightens us with new and added FEARS. We imagine we are suffering from indigestion, then ulcers, then cancer — and finally DEATH, tile greatest fear of all! Sometimes we imagine ourselves suffering from a nervous breakdown or mental derangement. Life becomes frightful.

Horrifying DREAMS begin to afflict us. Most dreams come from an overworked mind. Daily problems weigh us down AS we seek rest at night. We don't know how to relax. Solomon said: "For a dream cometh through a multitude of business” (Ecc. 5:3).

Since the conscious business with which so many have been occupied is that of creating new fears and worries, is it any wonder that a blood engorged brain will recreate these same fears in DREAMS?

When the state of mental worry takes a severe form, dreams and premonitions build up the FEAR OF DEATH — anal usually cause premature death. MOST OF THE WORLD is enslaved by this dreadful fear! This fear wrecks mental balance and poisons the body. It creates spiritual misconceptions that sometimes exert themselves in religious persecution. Persecution is a release valve for pent-up spiritual frustrations, fears, and the sense of self-condemnation. But persecution doesn't solve the problem.