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Fear and negativity as motivators

nakazcidnakazcid Somewhere in Dixie, y'all Veteran

Recently my fiancee told me that I use fear and negativity as motivators. The example she gave was that I use fear of losing my job to motivate myself to get moving in the morning. (I have a great deal of trouble waking up in the morning, and closely resemble a zombie at 4:30 AM.) What are the karmic consequences of flagellating myself with fear and anxiety?

Comments

  • DavidDavid some guy The Hammer in Ontario, Canada, eh Veteran

    @nakazcid said:

    Recently my fiancee told me that I use fear and negativity as motivators. The example she gave was that I use fear of losing my job to motivate myself to get moving in the morning. (I have a great deal of trouble waking up in the morning, and closely resemble a zombie at 4:30 AM.) What are the karmic consequences of flagellating myself with fear and anxiety?

    Right now it would seem the consequences are that you've been told and perhaps now notice it in yourself.

    Maybe ask yourself why you feel fear for losing your job. What would be harmed? If the answer is family then maybe you could work on changing motivators to more resemble reality. Instead of fear of losing your job, you can see through that and use the love of family for motivation.

    karasti
  • upekkaupekka Veteran
    edited December 2016

    @nakazcid said:
    What are the karmic consequences of flagellating myself with fear and anxiety?

    present moment fear and anxiety is itself the present suffering, 'kamma vipaka/ resultant' of your own previous unskillful thought/deed/word

    present anxiety and fear themselves are present unskillful thoughts which brings future (from the next moment) suffering

    if you are wise,
    know that, whatever has done in the past can not be changed now, but i can be skillful now
    attend to whatever skillful thought, deed, word now, do not give into fear and anxiety

    think 'going to work means, going to help someone, be it the boss, or any one who get benefit from your work', you involve with skillful thoughts
    work with the thought you are helping someone, you involve with skillful deeds
    talk to workmates and customers kindly, you involve with skillful words

    you are practising Buddha's Teaching doing day today activities

    nakazcid
  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran

    @nakazcid said:

    What are the karmic consequences of flagellating myself with fear and anxiety?

    More flagellating of the self with fear and anxiety....A karmic pattern that one adheres to...

    dhammachicklenpadilla
  • nakazcidnakazcid Somewhere in Dixie, y'all Veteran
    edited December 2016

    I frequently suffer from a major lack of energy and motivation. When my will is insufficient to get me to perform a task, terror frequently does the job. I've tried using positive thoughts to motivate me, but they aren't nearly as effective at getting me to do stuff when my will is sapped, or just too puny for the task at hand. How do you suggest I motivate myself?

  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran

    @nakazcid said:
    I frequently suffer from a major lack of energy and motivation.

    If possible improve your diet, cut out any junk food/drinks ...

    When my will is insufficient to get me to perform a task, terror frequently does the job.

    Anxiety and panic... monkey mind at work....

    I've tried using positive thoughts to motivate me, but they aren't nearly as effective at getting me to do stuff when my will is sapped, or just too puny for the task at hand.

    Monkey mind at work

    How do you suggest I motivate myself?

    @nakazcid

    In a nutshell....Along with a change of dietary habits where possible... it's also a matter of training/taming the "monkey mind"

    If you tame the monkey mind, life will run more smoothly, but it does take diligent practice

    I posted this "link" in another thread earlier, it's about not trying to rush and get everything done all at once, but to gradually chipping away at things ....

    May you and your partner be well @nakazcid

    lobsternakazcidlenpadilla
  • @nakazcid said:
    What are the karmic consequences of flagellating myself with fear and anxiety?

    More of the same.

    It is a karmic/psychological loop. Meditation/concentration/reframing allows us to practice new loops.

    For example this morning having to do some Christmas juggling with several very difficult family members, filled me with dread and nervousness. However I just examined and allowed this feeling to arise, be recognised as empty or dependent on nothing that has happened and let go of it.

    Easy to say but it takes experience, understanding and practice. However there it was, briefly ... and gone ...

    My sponsor Mr Cushion would be proud ...
    https://uk.pinterest.com/explore/teachings-of-buddha/

    nakazcidShoshinlenpadilla
  • KeromeKerome Did I fall in the forest? Europe Veteran
    edited December 2016

    @nakazcid said:
    I frequently suffer from a major lack of energy and motivation. When my will is insufficient to get me to perform a task, terror frequently does the job. I've tried using positive thoughts to motivate me, but they aren't nearly as effective at getting me to do stuff when my will is sapped, or just too puny for the task at hand. How do you suggest I motivate myself?

    Generally I find that if one is in harmony with the universe, everything is easy, and no effort is ever required to motivate one to start on a task. It is either the thing to be done, and so you do it, or it is not. Ultimately the only effort involved is the physical labour, the rest is purely in your mind.

    So in fact effort spent motivating yourself is due to a lack of clarity, and in a way it is you struggling against yourself. There is a part of you that says, I'm feeling lazy or torpid so let's have another half hour in bed, and there is another part that says, if I don't get up the boss will fire me! Neither side is truly in harmony with the universe. In fact you have boundless energy within you, when at the proper moment you act.

    Being in harmony is possible - even inevitable - when you take a step back from the mind. But it is also possible to get the mind in harmony. Often you will find that the hindrances the mind throws up in getting things done are the same hindrances you come across in meditation, or sometimes delusions thrown up by past experience. Mindfulness and insight are the tools you can use to pick these things apart, together with antidotes prescribed by Buddhist wisdom.

    As Master Yoda says, "Do! There is no try."

    lobsterShoshinDavid
  • I heard from somewhere that is four kinds of Motivation and we need to work out which one fits us. There is...

    Towards Motivation - If I do this I will get this.
    Away from - I should do this because if I dont something will happen.

    Along with motivation - I should do this because it is what everyone else is doing it.
    Against motivation - I want to do this because its not what everyone else is doing.

    It looks like you are Away from.

  • nakazcidnakazcid Somewhere in Dixie, y'all Veteran

    @Kerome said:
    Generally I find that if one is in harmony with the universe, everything is easy, and no effort is ever required to motivate one to start on a task. It is either the thing to be done, and so you do it, or it is not. Ultimately the only effort involved is the physical labour, the rest is purely in your mind.

    So in fact effort spent motivating yourself is due to a lack of clarity, and in a way it is you struggling against yourself. There is a part of you that says, I'm feeling lazy or torpid so let's have another half hour in bed, and there is another part that says, if I don't get up the boss will fire me! Neither side is truly in harmony with the universe. In fact you have boundless energy within you, when at the proper moment you act.

    Being in harmony is possible - even inevitable - when you take a step back from the mind. But it is also possible to get the mind in harmony. Often you will find that the hindrances the mind throws up in getting things done are the same hindrances you come across in meditation, or sometimes delusions thrown up by past experience. Mindfulness and insight are the tools you can use to pick these things apart, together with antidotes prescribed by Buddhist wisdom.

    As Master Yoda says, "Do! There is no try."

    I'm not quite sure what you mean by being in harmony with the universe. If you mean enlightenment, then yep, I'm a long way away from that. Being filled with boundless energy does not match my experience of existence. Most everything requires effort, from getting up in the morning to walking down the hallway. Recently I found that I have a serious Vitamin D deficiency, and taking supplements has helped some, but again, I'm not getting boundless energy. (Perhaps @Shoshin has a good point about junk food.)

  • KeromeKerome Did I fall in the forest? Europe Veteran
    edited December 2016

    @nakazcid said:

    @Kerome said:
    Generally I find that if one is in harmony with the universe, everything is easy, and no effort is ever required to motivate one to start on a task. It is either the thing to be done, and so you do it, or it is not. Ultimately the only effort involved is the physical labour, the rest is purely in your mind.

    So in fact effort spent motivating yourself is due to a lack of clarity, and in a way it is you struggling against yourself. There is a part of you that says, I'm feeling lazy or torpid so let's have another half hour in bed, and there is another part that says, if I don't get up the boss will fire me! Neither side is truly in harmony with the universe. In fact you have boundless energy within you, when at the proper moment you act.

    Being in harmony is possible - even inevitable - when you take a step back from the mind. But it is also possible to get the mind in harmony. Often you will find that the hindrances the mind throws up in getting things done are the same hindrances you come across in meditation, or sometimes delusions thrown up by past experience. Mindfulness and insight are the tools you can use to pick these things apart, together with antidotes prescribed by Buddhist wisdom.

    As Master Yoda says, "Do! There is no try."

    I'm not quite sure what you mean by being in harmony with the universe. If you mean enlightenment, then yep, I'm a long way away from that. Being filled with boundless energy does not match my experience of existence. Most everything requires effort, from getting up in the morning to walking down the hallway. Recently I found that I have a serious Vitamin D deficiency, and taking supplements has helped some, but again, I'm not getting boundless energy. (Perhaps @Shoshin has a good point about junk food.)

    I mean to say that if you correctly realise that NOW is the moment to do a certain task, then there is no argument not to do it, and no laziness will keep you from doing it. If NOW is the moment, then you do it without shirking or stopping. It is as if laziness does not exist, because the moment to do the task has arrived. Do you see? There is an underlying urgency, which comes to the fore when you realise.

    The only thing stopping you is the arguments in your mind. Therefore if you stop paying attention to your mind, all things become easy to start, there is no more resistance. Harmony with the universe comes when there are no more desires and fears and delusions of your own, and your intuition brings you into tune with what the universe desires.

    But getting rid of junk food is also important.

  • @nakazcid said:

    Recently my fiancee told me that I use fear and negativity as motivators.

    It is very toxic. Just like diet can be enhancing or sapping as @Shoshin and @Kerome mention.

    How do we reframe? In other words employ and engage the 8 fold path or similar? Practice.

    Who knew? [clue: everyone here]

    “My life has been filled with terrible misfortunes, most of which have never happened.”
    Mark Twain

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cognitive_reframing

    lenpadilla
  • is fear a result of delusion?
    do we have to get rid of delusion to get rid of fear?

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Somewhere in the UK, Central-Southern.... Moderator

    I suspect, for my part, that Fear is a result of ILLusion. As is everything else, of course.....
    Once we appreciate and understand that everything is illusory, the remainder falls into place.....

  • wojciechwojciech the desert Explorer

    @upekka said:
    is fear a result of delusion?
    do we have to get rid of delusion to get rid of fear?

    F.E.A.R. = False Evidence Appearing Real

    is the pursuit of getting rid of delusion and fear simply another desire?

  • JaySonJaySon Gulf Breeze, Florida Veteran

    I have been full of fear all my life. It's definitely my main defilement. (I must have been terrifying in past lives. Who knows...)

    I have realized that when I'm afraid, it's usually because I'm projecting myself into the future and fearing future fear. When I concentrate my mind in the present moment, fear seems to take a back seat much of the time.

    Or I will full-on try to love that part of myself that fears if I'm by myself and won't embarrass myself by handling the full force of a strong emotion. If that's the case, then I will bring my awareness to the area of fear in my body. I breath into it. I talk to it. I tell it that it's allowed to be afraid all it wants. I'm here to listen, not judge. I'm here to empathize with it. I'm here to hold it tenderly as if it were a crying baby.

    The Buddha told the analogy about the two arrows. A guy was struck by an arrow in his leg. As if that wasn't painful enough, another arrow came flying in and struck the same place. This didn't make the pain double, but multiple times, ten times the pain.

    This second arrow, in our case, is fear of fear. It's better to fear and do your best to love the part of you that fears than it is to run from it in terror. Or at least do your best to pull your awareness back into the present moment. You're doing the best you can. It's all you can do, right? You're always doing the best you can. So cut yourself some slack.

    The fear passes. Life goes on.

    lobsternakazcid
  • nakazcidnakazcid Somewhere in Dixie, y'all Veteran

    Fear serves a useful purpose. If I see a cougar in the woods, I run away from it instead of trying to pet it and getting eaten. But in my case I use fear as a whip to motivate myself. If I shouldn't be using fear, how else do I overcome my inertia?

    In the case of going to work in the morning, there is love of family and the prospect of helping others. But these don't have the sharp urgency of losing my job and becoming homeless. Though that's just one example, in general fear seems to be a much more powerful motivator than altruism. Am I alone in this? Is it possible to change? Are there specific practices that would repriortize altruism as a motivator? Metta practice, maybe?

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