episode9 -

EPISODE # 9

Your Fear or Your Future - What Do You Choose?

If you’ve struggled with fear and anxiety of letting go of the past and really moving on after divorce, this episode is for you. 

In today's episode I am sharing with you why the future feels so scary and exactly what to do about it.  And it may not be what you think! 

If you’ve struggled with fear and anxiety of letting go of the past and really moving on after divorce, this episode is for you.  

 

BY THE TIME YOU FINISH LISTENING, YOU’LL DISCOVER: 

 

  • The reason why moving forward feels so scary after divorce.  
  • Your mind is wired to keep you safe in the face of change and it may be holding you back from moving on. Not to worry, I will let you know exactly how to rewire your mind to release that fear.
  • The most powerful thing you can do to face any fear about moving forward – take action in the direction of your fear.  Tune in to find out how.  

 

I have a special free gift for my Podcast Listeners that you can download www.dianahjohnsoncoaching.com/podcast.  It is one of my most powerful reprogramming meditations called I AM Enough and it’s my gift to you for listening. 

 

When you finish listening, I’d love to hear your biggest takeaway from today’s episode. Take a screenshot of you listening on your device, share it to your Instagram stories and tag me, @dianah_johnson

 

While you’re there, make sure you follow me on Instagram so you can see behind the scenes of how I help divorced women return to self love, rebuild their independent identity and experience greater peace of mind after divorce. 

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EPISODE TRANSCRIPT

Your Listening to the Return to You Podcast, episode #9



A member in my Phoenix Rising Program said to me the other day, now that this work is helping me let go , I’m feeling anxious. And I thought, I have to bring this to the podcast because that anxiety is often why we stay stuck for so long. Stuck in pain or simply stuck in life.  And here’s the thing, what keeps you safe, keeps you stuck.

 

There’s this story I love about an old man and his dog sitting out on the patio. The old man is in a rocking chair and next to him is his dog.  The poor dog is sitting there and whimpering loudly. This Neighbor walks by and having seen this dog sitting there whimpering in the past, says …. “what’s wrong  with your dog? He’s clearly in pain.   The old man answers “he’s sitting on a nail”.  The neighbour, confused says “well if he’s in pain, why don’t he just move.  Why doesn’t he get off the nail? ” And the old man says, because he knows it will hurt too much.  

 

This is the way it is with us. It feels safer to stay in the pain then  it does to face the fear of moving forward. At least we know the pain. At least we know even if it’s not pain and it’s mediocrity. At least we know the comfort of that feeling. We don’t know what to expect in the future so staying still  seems like the best option.  The comfort of the pain we know, feels better than the fear of moving on.  But you weren’t meant for a life of pain or mediocrity so no it’s not the best option and that’s what I want to talk about today.

 

So if you have fear come up as you move forward and let go of the life you thought you’d have, this episode is for you. Not only am I going to talk about why this fear is so common but exactly what to do about it. So you can commit to moving forward and creating the life that you deserve. You can get off the nail, get out of pain and move forward. So stay tuned …

 

It is completely normal to experience fear when moving forward into a unknown future. And that’s because it’s how our brain is built.  So if the future feels scary to the point that it keeps you stuck, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with you. You have a brain like the rest of us that’s built to keep you safe.

 

It’s so important to know the source of fear so you can know how to work your way through it.  And why is that even important? For as long as you have fear it will create resistance in you to heal deeply and move forward. It will result in sabotaging your own future.  And this is the source of the fear.

 

Back in caveman days, when it wasn’t safe to go out and look for your food, your brain began to evolve to keep you safe. It noticed any change in your environment and your habits to ensure that you were safe.  It needed to keep you safe so you could get food for your survival. When it noticed that something had changed, it would create the fight or flight response in your body so you could run or  defend yourself.



And guess what? That fight or flight response still happens today when there’s change.  But in our modern world we don’t need it for our survival in the same way. Now we are over cautious to the threat of change. Our brain can react like the change is harmful when indeed it’s just change. So when you do work to release pain and create a new you, your brain alarm bells go off.  It’s says, this is different.  This change may not be safe.  So the fight or flight response gets triggered. That’s simply what’s happening. And now that you know, you have an opportunity to do something with it.

 

So your brain is just doing its job. We are all habitual beings. And some of us don’t want to accept this, but 95% of how you’re thinking, feeling and acting is habit. Running on autopilot.  And when you break the habits of your old identity to move forward,  alarm bells go off. It’s saying I don’t even know this person that’s thinking and acting differently.  And those alarm bells are going to to keep you safe.  And that keeps you stuck.

 

So you may be wondering what do about it to continue moving forward.   And to do so without this fight or flight response.

 

Well the very first thing is, and you may not like this, you have to be willing to accept this discomfort.  And accept that it’s part of  changing and moving forward.   And I call it discomfort and nothing more because it is a natural reaction in your body. It is only a problem if you fight against it and say it is a problem.  you have to be willing to allow the discomfort. Allow it with Grace because it’s not only normal but it’s part of how we grow. As we do things that scare us we expand our own comfort zone and we can do more and more. 

 

I can’t tell you, how many people stop themselves from doing the work that it takes to deeply heal.  And to transform.  Because they do not want to accept the discomfort of anxiety that rises with growth.



So often, when working with clients to release programming, they experience the greatest amount of fear right before a breakthrough. Because they know they will not be the same person on the other side of it. Luckily because I’m working with them we can see it coming and I can support them and working through it. It is so incredible to see that right before our greatest transformation we may experience our greatest fear.  but as we allow it, accept it and move through it, it will absolutely be worth it.

 

Of course just a little caveat if you completely do not feel safe to continue doing work and taking actions then you shouldn’t. But if it is that natural fear that comes from stepping out of your comfort zone, and you have to get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Here is what I mean by allowing and accepting that fear is part of their Journey As you move forward.

 

For me, when I am on a flight I have those butterflies in my belly right before takeoff.  Anytime during the flight when there is turbulence those butterflies return.  I am uncomfortable with my discomfort of flying at that time.   The flying for me and for many people I know, brings up some fear and the body reacts to it.  So although it brings up fear, most will still allow and accept that as part of the flying experience. You’re on the plane, feeling nervous, scenarios going through your mind and you accept that it’s part of the journey.  To continue flying to the destinations that you want to go,  you accept and allow that feeling of fear.   You bring yourself back to the present moment and remind yourself the journey is worth it. That Caribbean vacation, to see that sister who lives across the country…  it is worth it for you to allow the discomfort in your body to take that journey. You accept it as part of the journey to get to your destination.

 

And that’s exactly what I mean by being willing to allow and accept the fear as you focus on the vision that you have for your future.  Here is the thing, anything we resist grow stronger. And anything we allow with grace loses its power over us. When you fight against something it grows. When you allow it, it dissolves. Know that fear is simply an emotion, a vibration in your body that holds no power over you unless you let it. The emotion of fear itself does not harm you. It’s simply a reaction in your body. In fact it creates the same physiological response in your body as excitement. heart racing Palms sweating … that’s how we feel when we’re excited as well. It is the meaning that we attach to that response as good or bad that makes it a problem.



Because here are your two choices.

 

You continue on taking action in the face of the fear to reduce its power.  The only way to reduce fear is to take action in the direction of your fear and it loses its power. You can’t think your way out of that fear you have to act your way out of it. So that is Choice number one.

 

Your second choice is to give up and not move forward, because you don’t like the discomfort of that fear. And that means you stay stuck. Remember what keeps you feeling safe, keeps you stuck.

 

What we gain from staying in resistance of the unknown journey is it makes us feel safe. When you say you want to move forward but you don’t take the necessary actions, it’s because you’re getting something more from not doing it. And often what we are getting from staying stuck is it makes us feel safe.

 

you get to decide.. ask yourself, is it worth it for me to allow and accept that fear will rise as I release the old and move forward. Will I accept the journey with some fear because the vision I have for my future is worth the journey to get there. Just like being on that plane with those butterflies.

 

So acceptance that it’s part of the journey is the first thing to do  to keep moving forward.

 

So let’s dive in to the second thing to do.  The second thing is to take action towards your fear to reduce its power

 

 

I cannot tell you how powerful this is.  When I work clients and they have any fear come up about something they want to do, we go directly to what’s the next best step in the direction of what you want. Even if it is a tiny baby step, the power of taking that little step is undeniable.



Here is an example from right after my divorce.  A few weeks after my separation I was asked to do a presentation in my company. The office was 3 hours away from me.. And I would have to take a drive on the highway to get there. Now before my marriage,  I had driven on the highway hundreds of times and never really thought twice about it. It wasn’t something that created any anxiety in me and it wasn’t an issue in my life at all. However, during my marriage I was the passenger in my car most of the time and I hadn’t actually driven that far on the highway for years.  So by the time this presentation came up, the thought of driving on the highway put me in a panic. I knew I couldn’t turn the meeting down and I wasn’t going to tell my boss that I was afraid to drive on the highway.  I had no other choice but to take action despite my near panic.

 

And this is no exaggeration, I remember being behind the steering wheel  that morning.  As I backed out of my driveway my body is in full fight or flight response. My heart is racing , palms are sweaty, I have no saliva in my mouth. And I begin to drive. And for the  first hour and a half my knuckles are white from the grip that I have on the steering wheel.  During the last hour, I’m relaxing my grip a little.  When I finally get to the office I feel like I had run a marathon.  

 

I couldn’t focus a lot in the meeting because I knew I had to make the drive back home. But to my surprise the journey back home was a lot easier. Of course there were still some anxiety but it was nothing near what it had been on the drive there.  It took maybe three more drives on the highway, before I was back to my old Comfort level before my marriage. Had I made an excuse or called in sick and let that fear build up in my mind, I could still be scared to drive on the highway today.  Now I travel the world alone without any fear, and that day was the start of it.

 

The longer we allow things to build in our mind, the more power it has over us. The greater the consequence appears to us. We are building it up in our mind. And remember your mind doesn’t know the difference between imagination or reality. So if you keep imagining things about your future that are scary,  your mind will take that as truth and your body will react to it. The only way to show your mind that the fear is not real is to take the action. And when you take the action again and again your mind sees that it’s safe.

 

So I invite you to think about something that’s causing you fear about being on your own or moving forward.  And ask yourself what is my next best step? Even if it is a baby step what action can I take today to show my mind the fear is imagination and not reality.  To show my mind I am  safe moving into unknown territory.


Okay and the final thing I want you to consider is the meaning that you have attached the to moving forward. I said earlier that the fear becomes a source of resistance to moving forward. So it’s important to see that often the source of that fear is the meaning that you have attached to moving forward. So initially it’s your brain saying this is all too different the environment has changed too much.  And the fight or flight response is triggered to keep you safe.

 

And next, the fear comes from what you make moving forward mean to you. 

 

I hear this so often in my group program. There are many  women in the same group that have the exact same meaning attached to moving on. so I see this so often. Here are some typical reasons I hear…

One of  my clients in the group said if I heal, I really have to move on. I’ve also heard, if I heal, he wins. If I heal, it means I’m okay with divorce. The most fear inducing meaning of moving forward is, if I heal, I really do have to move forward into an unknown future.

 

If I release the identity of the person carrying this pain of divorce, I really do have to face the future. And I don’t know who I will be if I release this pain. Who am I  without the pain. When you’re releasing old habits and thoughts,  anxiety rises because you don’t know who you will be without it. You don’t know how to identify yourself without it.  And that’s scary.  Your mind says if I heal I won’t be the person I’ve been for the last year, two years or 3 years.  And I’m scared because I don’t know who I will be. 

 

To uncover the meaning you have attached to healing and moving forward, ask yourself … Do I think healing means  I have to face a future I can’t predict. Because guess what, you have to face it anyway. The future is coming and you can go in Kicking and Screaming or you can go in with confidence and preparation.

 

And ask yourself, do I think moving forward means I will not knw who I am anymore without the feelings I’ve carried for so long? After working with hundreds of women,  I often see anxiety right before the release of the old identity and transformation. When there is a breakthrough on the other end.  that’s when I see the anxiety the most.

 

Being on the other side of it is actually the true person that you are, you were born in content and peace. Before the programming happened to you.  So if you are feeling fear about the unknown future and who you will be on your own, I want you to remember you are not letting go of who you are.  you are returning to who you are, to who you were before the programming before life told you how you’re supposed to think and what you’re supposed to believe and how you’re supposed to feel. 

 

When you’re having anxiety, you need to remind yourself that you’re not changing who you are, you’re shedding the layers to get back to who you were born as. But you have to get to the source of that resistance of not wanting to shed those layers because it means something. 

 

So I invite you to think about what you think it means to move forward.  What fearful meaning runs through your mind.



Being on the other side of it, is actually the true person that you are.   you were born in content and peace. Before the programming happened to you. So if you are feeling fear about the unknown future and who you will be on your own, I want you to remember you are not letting go of who you are.  you are returning to who you are.  Releasing the thoughts that create the pain is a return to you.  Who you were before the programming. 

 

When you’re having anxiety, remind yourself that you’re not changing who you are, you’re shedding the layers to get back to you.

 

Okay just a very quick recap of what we covered today. When you are feeling fear about taking any actions to move forward here’s what you need to do… First accept  And allow the sphere as part of the journey. Cuz if you resisted It Grow stronger.  so allow and know the journey is worth it. Secondly, take action in the direction of your fear so it loses your power over you. And third uncover what you think it means to move forward and release the meaning it has for you.  

 

 Alright let’s dive into your reflection questions for today… 

 

What small step can I take in the direction I’ve something that I fear?

 

What do I believe will happen in the future that causes me anxiety.  Whatever thoughts you have that  trigger fear, write those down and do a worst-case scenario. What’s the worst that can happen and if it did, what is my plan to deal with it. You will feel much more in control when you have a plan to deal with the worst thing that your imagination is telling you could happen.

 

 And finally, do I have the feeling of safety from staying stuck? And if I do, is it true that staying where I am is safer than creating the future that I want?  It is safer going into the future with resistance?

 

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