Transforming Fear to Joy

Transforming Fear to Joy — A Glad Game

Last week, I blogged about the “sad game” played out in SWOT-based strategic planning, which often gets stuck focusing on the negative (threats and weaknesses).  The loss of energy and imagination is directly correlated with attempts to reduce what we do not want.  Unfortunately when we focus on the negative, we attract and create negative outcomes.  Conversely, to create more of what we want, reframing our thinking creates new pathways in our brain and new positive outcomes.  Give the “glad game” a try and you will see what I mean.


Why choose pain over joy
by reacting impulsively to sensations of
ache, agony and fear?
Is this not the act of society gone crazy?

Joy arrives quietly, shrouding with comfort,
displacing flighty anxiety with solidness
emptying out sadness and pleasure seeking.

It is this void we avoid, for fear of
becoming nothing, no one.  When in truth,
surrendering attachment to the negative
frees the authentic.

What would love choose, pain or joy?

Helen Maupin
12 February 2013

In contemplating my own reframing of sad to glad, I keep re-discovering how deeply rooted is this unconscious, fear-based behaviour pattern.  A recent dialogue from my awareness journal expands on this very topic.

I have clung to my solace and solitude; to the protection of staying in my cocooned
sacred space.  Even though, at a distant fork in the road, I chose not to join a mon-
astery, I all but lived as a monk — solitary, celibate, in deep pursuit of an intimate
relationship with myself, spirit, Life.

This monk-like existence enabled me to release depression and anxiety (extreme
energies) from my body and mind.  I am left with a quiet internal cavern devoid
of distracting thoughts and feelings.  I find the emptiness, the void, within me both
comforting and disconcerting.  When one was once habituated to emotional moods
as a telling of one’s experience, to feel nothing but calm and quiet takes some

No longer aware of boundaries that once separated me, my sense of this inner void is
solid and stable.  The touch of solidity emerges as comfort with uncertainty and
confidence that I am well capable of handling whatever emerges.  There is no need to
cling to my cocoon for it is now part of me.  It travels with me and protects me from
dysfunction and dis-ease.

In my own personal transformation, my journey is fraught with challenges, losses and fears.  I notice how quickly I can shift to a negative sense of gloom, doom or weariness because of a belief that I now have to fix a problem.  When we find ourselves feeling any of these negative emotions, we are choosing the path of pain rather than joy.  Opting for the pain of gloom and doom does not mean we are more responsible and caring people.  It merely means we are impulsively choosing a pathway imprinted into our mass consciousness rather than pausing and asking ourselves what do I want more of.

Our personal gifts and potential are located in the silver lining of every challenge, loss and fear we encounter.

What fear is present in your life right now?

What silver lining exists within this fear that allows you to create more of what you want?  Or, what would love choose to do?

Kindness in words creates confidence.  
Kindness in thinking creates profoundness.
Kindness in giving creates love.

Lao Tzu

Picture of Author: Helen Maupin

Author: Helen Maupin

Helen is passionate about transforming fear into love — from her, for her, for all. She expresses her commitment to transformation through writing poetry, self-awareness and yoga books, co-designing organizations into adaptive enterprises and deepening her daily meditation and yoga practices.


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