My Journey Through Fear

I had a rough few days.

As I watch the world implode, the virus surge, the markets plunge — my doctor tells me I need cataract surgery. Anything with the eyes terrifies me.

My head fills with worse case scenarios. I fall into a very dark place, unable to find my way out.

Then I remember what A Course in Miracles calls “the most important concept that exists in the universe—”the Law of Cause and Effect.”

The Course explains this law very differently from the world’s more generally accepted Newtonian explanation.

The Course insists that nothing ‘out there’ has anything to do with my feeling happy or scared. My thoughts are always the cause.

If I want to change my experience—from, say, fear to tranquility—I must first change my thoughts.

“Seek not to change the world,” the Course tells me, “but change your mind about the world.”

I’ve long followed the Course’s wisdom. But this time I’m struggling. I can’t seem to “change my mind about the world” while I’m sinking in a quicksand of negative thinking.

Suddenly, my eyes land on a blue post-it note lying on my desk. On it is an affirmation I penned when the pandemic first broke.

“I can handle this.”

Those four words feel tremendously comforting. I can handle this. I say them again and again until I feel my fear subside.

I believe this worked for one reason. I didn’t deny my fear or try to numb it by trying to convince myself everything is going to be fine and dandy I reframed it and thus transformed it.

I reassured myself that whatever happens, I would be able to handle it. And somewhere deep inside, I knew that was true.

How do you calm your fears when they seem insurmountable? Tell me about it below.







Comments & Feedback

  • Gail McMeekin

    Barbara, I had cataract surgery on both eyes a couple of years ago with one of Boston’s best as I was having trouble driving at night. It was easy and I recovered quickly. No issues. However I did not totally understand the option to have one eye close up and one far away. I had both eyes done to see well up close and my up close vision is now superb and I wear glasses for distance. But I in hindsight I might have done one eye up close and one far away.
    So make sure that you understand all the options before you decide. But you will love being able to see well again!

  • June McBryde

    I was in the same place as you describe a few days ago. When the virus first broke, it was like “ok”. Then a few days ago I got yet another item of not good news on top of a few in between, and I just wanted to have melt down. I thought to myself. “how much am I supposed to take?” But I don’t usually give in to that feeling. However, this time, I made myself put in a yoga workout and through the moves I sobbed. When I finished and did some enlightenment reading, I realized that I was letting circumstances dictate how I felt. It’s one thing to have that head knowledge that I should not let circumstances dictate but it’s another thing to realize that I was doing just that. So why not do just that? Because I am never truly alone and because as a human I have been sent to this existence to exist and experience until I leave. So, as you said Barbara, ” I can handle it”.

    • barbara huson

      June, I totally love everything you said. And I heard you. I just got back from yoga, meditated, read the Course and it all flipped the switch for me, just like you. Thank you sooooooo much for your wise words!

  • Christine

    Recalling passages from Barbara’s Overcoming Underearning are a part of my meditation/prayer practice to help me re-set and keep moving forward.
    Regarding cataract surgery, my mother’s comment post surgery was it was so easy and everything is so much more vivid and clearer, I’m wondering why I waited. BUT… I was surprised by my wrinkles when I looked in the mirror

    • barbara huson

      Ha! Ha! I’m well aware of my wrinkles, Christine…i hate to think of them looking worse. My mom keeps saying the same thing to me…’you’ll wish you would’ve done it sooner.” I hope so!!!

      That’s so cool you recall passages from my book as part of your spiritual practice. I’d love to know what they are.

      Thanks so much for posting!!!

  • Patti Fagan

    Barbara, this is when we pull out our self-coaching tools and do what we can to honor the present moment. Psalm 46:10 comes to mind, “Be still and know that I am God.” Meditating on that one helps me feel grounded and protected. Also, I’ve been experimenting with essential oils and lavender essential oil has been a new best friend! Apparently, the molecules in (top quality) essential oils are so small that they pass through the blood-brain barrier. Lavender oil is known to promote relaxation and treats anxiety. (According to studies it impacts the limbic system.) Once COVID-19 hit, I started using it every day. I use it every day, all day to keep myself in a calm and relaxed state. Try it. It works!

    • barbara huson

      I have a bottle of lavender oil sitting in my bathroom shelf…I’m going to go get it immediately. Thank you sooo much for this suggestion. Big hugs xoxo

  • Kaye

    So Sorry to hear about your eyes and wishing all the best for you with caring for them.

    • barbara huson

      Kaye, you are the SWEETEST. I appreciate your kinds wishes…thanks so much for posting here!!!

  • Lisa

    Hi Barbara,

    I calm my fears by focusing on what I CAN control, not what can’t!

    Had to have eye surgery about 16 years ago. My surgeon told me the operation would feel slightly unpleasant, but not painful. I could see him stitching my eye with my own eye (ewww) It changed my life thought!!!!

    • barbara huson

      Yikes….I can’t even imagine watching him stitch my eye. YUCK! But I guess, what you’re saying is that it wasn’t that bad. At least I hope that’s what you’re saying! I wonder how that changed your life thought!

      • Lisa


        I think what I meant was that the surgeon mentally prepared me for what was going to happen. Even though it was gross, it wasn’t that bad and it wasn’t that painful.

        My end result was better than what I expected. My vision improved better than what I thought and cosmetically my eye looked a lot better. I felt more confident!

  • Lisa


    When I’m feeling extremely anxious, I also like to ask myself this question: “what is it about life that I just don’t trust”.

  • Karen

    I calm my fears through earnest prayer; taking several calming breaths (breathing deeply and slowly in through the nose to the count of six and out through the nose or mouth to the count of nine. Repeat, at least, four times in a row.), and by hand-writing (scribbling) about whatever/whomever is bothering me, write fast without stopping to analyze the situation…it can work wonders!!!

    • barbara huson

      Karen, I LOVE your suggestion. I’m definitely going to try it. I used to do breath counting, but I totally forgot about it. It always helped. NEver heard of scribbling about what bothers me afterwards. I’v very intrigued by this exercise. Big thanks for sharing it with me.

  • Barbara

    I use EFT … Emotional Freedom Technique. The gal who taught me this process is excellent and I learned how to work through the tapping on the acupressure points bringing out the fears (or whatever) and then by the time I’ve finished … I’m fine. It has such a calming effect. I use it with procrastination also. She’s Andrea Meier [email protected].

    • barbara huson

      Thank you so much Barbara for reminding me about EFT. This is just what I needed to hear. I know a little bit about it, but I need to learn more…so that’s for the link. I’ll check it out. What an angel you are!!!

  • Connie Long

    Hi Barbara- Thank you for writing and sharing this message. I calm my seemingly insurmountable fears a few different ways. One is crying and releasing. I find that I feel so much brighter and calmer once I let the tears come and flow as long as they need to. Another is journaling- untangling my brain onto paper helps me “work through” the fear. Something else I find calming is painting using the Intentional Creativity meta cognitive method. This is new to me but it’s deep, profound, healing but mostly FUN. I’m so in love with IC! You can find out more and take a few classes at

    Gee- I seem to have a lot of tools I had “forgotten” about! ha! Another method I use is EFT. And that last one that comes to mind is asking my husband (who died a year ago) to bring me calming and joyful images. It’s truly astounding what he can do from the other side of the veil.

    I feel better just having written this… and then reading everyone else’s comments uplifts me even more. I hope that’s ringing true for you too, Barbara. I just started reading your book Overcoming Underearning… I’m ready.

  • barbara huson

    Everything rings true for me Connie. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate you posting this here. You DO have a lot of wonderful tools. It’s funny, the post right before yours mentioned EFT….it’s something I really feel I need to learn more about. But my favorite is asking your late husband to calm you…that is so sweet. Gave me chills. Thank you!

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Meet Barbara Huson

When a devastating financial crisis rocked her world, Barbara Huson knew she had to get smart about money… and she did. Now, she wants to empower every women to take charge of their money and take charge of their lives! She’s doing just that with her best-selling books, life changing retreats and private financial coaching.

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