Updated: Jan 31, 2022
Overcoming my fear of dogs
As a young child, we lived in an area where our neighbors had doberman pinscher dogs. I was 5 or 6 years old when I heard the dogs barking, which terrified me as they were just a short distance away from where we lived and I was sure they would get out and attack me. I kept that fear into my 20's and I was hoping I could find a way to heal that fear. I wanted to try a technique I'd learned about asking the Universe/my higher Self for help. Somewhere along the way I recognized that the Universe had a lot more wisdom than I did about healing and orchestrating situations and events to manifest positive outcomes.
One day in my 20's I was in the Spokane Valley. I'd taken a bus to go to the local library to find a book I wanted to read. The bus left me off about 3 blocks from the library and I walked gingerly down the street, as I had sprained my ankle the day before. In the past whenever I came across a dog that frightened me, I would run or climb a tree. That day I could do neither. Within a block of the library, a dog came running out from the back yard of the house he lived in, barking and growling.
For the first time in my life, when it came to barking dogs, I stood my ground. I gathered all the energy from the years of fear, frustration, anger and helplessness I'd felt and stood firm. Under my breath, I swore menacingly at the dog - "You take one step off that lawn and I will bash your f.....king head in." He came to a screeching halt, immediately turned around and ran back to where he'd come from yelping and whining all the way there. I felt very powerful and strong.
Although I still am alert around doberman pinschers, pit bulls and similar dogs, I am much less afraid of them. I thanked my "guardian angels" for providing for me an opportunity to heal one of my fears. I learned later in psychology class that this situation would be called "flooding" a type of therapy where you are presented with a situation that is overwhelming and that you can't run from - your only choice is to face the situation with as much presence and centeredness as you can muster. That day I felt totally grounded, centered and present.
The other thing I learned from this experience is that I didn't have to "delve into every past traumatic experience to heal the parts of myself that needed healing. I could ask for help and trust that the Universe/my Higher Self knew much more than I did about orchestrating the perfect circumstances to allow healing on a deep level to occur. Years later I learned about "The Placemat Process (from the Abraham-Hicks material) which helped me clarify what was mine to do and what the Universe would be better at coordinating or creating. In the exercised, you simply draw a line down the center of a sheet of paper, on the left side you write down your usual list of things you want to accomplish that you have a great deal of control over completing. On the right side of the ledger, you write down things that you have no idea about how to accomplish, that you would like to see manifest in your life. I found the kinds of things I put on the Universe's side of the paper were things like this fear of dogs healing exercise, finding the perfect mate, finding the perfect job for where I am in this phase of my life, etc. I found this exercise helps me release the responsibility for making everything happen the way I'd like it to. I also found that the Universe is much more creative and surprising than I could ever think of being.
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