Matthieu Ricard
Brian Germain Presents
Transcending Fear Magazine
Issue #043
Zen Rollercoaster

"Remember that you are a teacher, you are helping people, making them feel safer, taking them from fear to love, from ignorance to knowledge."

-Stuart Wilde:

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By Brian Germain

We have two main forces that drive us in life. One is inspiration, and the other is fear. When we move forward due to a feeling of eagerness and fascination, we are fueled with a power that never ends. We enjoy the process from start to finish. When we are driven by fear of the consequences of failure, we feel an initial charge of energy that gets us moving, but if we continue to focus on the negative possibilities, our energy quickly wanes. This leaves us feeling overwhelmed, hopeless and unmotivated to take our work head-on. When fear is our fuel, we always run out of gas.

Whatever the task, we must always focus on the joy of the process, rather than the fear of failure. This is because our focus of attention is creating our mood, and it is our mood that shapes our capabilities in that moment. Have you noticed that your moments of greatest skill always feel joyous throughout the experience? It is true that you may have felt fear at the onset of the task, but you then directed your attention toward the perfect unfolding of the goal, and you allowed yourself to enjoy the ride.

We have all been conditioned to believe that positive emotion is a side effect of success, a benefit that we reserve for the completion of a task. Consequently we hold off on allowing our positive reinforcement until the task is done, thereby making the process of achieving that goal an unpleasant one. By following this experiential path over and over again, we establish a pattern of emotion, and the feeling of "constructive discontent" becomes our dominant mood. We allow ourselves to feel unhappy much of the time because we believe that the unhappiness is somehow serving our goal of being more productive. When we are driven by fear, this is our reality. Fortunately, there is another possibility.

If we consider that the emotions we carry with us have profound consequences in the world around us, we begin to see that the negative reinforcement model is not the way forward. We must consider the possibility that happiness is not just something to reserve for the completion of the task, but the very reason for our success in the first place. Emotion is not merely a qualitative side effect of our experience; it is the very basis of what is occurring: every thought and material consequence that we have is a result of that mental climate. What we focus upon creates how we feel, and what we feel, we create.

We must consider the possibility th
at happiness is not just something to reserve for the completion of the task,
but the reason for our success in the first place.

Depending on your mood, you have access to a particular realm of thought. If you feel good, your thoughts are solution-oriented, and you remain in a stance of positive expectation. Your world responds in kind, and you find yourself in a flow state that leads you to success in everything that you undertake. It all feels easy. Further, your positive emotion leads you to more experiences that lead to more positive emotion. When you are in a lousy mood, your thoughts are problem-oriented, and you remain in a stance of negative expectation. You are telling the story of the problem, and the list of negative aspects of the situation leads you to feel overwhelmed and hopeless. This is why fear is the road to nowhere. It simply leads us back to the feeling of fear.

We must use our emotions as our guide. If we feel lousy, we must first address our mood before trying to change our physical reality in order to relieve our negative feeling. That is a paradigm shift for most people. Taking action in a place of feeling bad will only lead to feeling worse. We can only create with the soil that we are currently standing in, and negative emotion makes terrible fertilizer. We have to change our mood first.


Conscious mood-shifting is a difficult task for most adults. Children naturally migrate back to a feeling of ease and joy, but grown-ups seem to need lots of time and a long list of reasons why they should get happy again. This is strange, since we were all children a short time ago. Our culture has shaped us into something that does not fit with who we really are. We are happy children, later.

If we are to become effective people, we must learn this art of deliberately shifting our emotions from a negative place to a positive place. This begins with a feeling of surrender. We need to let go. We need to stop thinking whatever it was that we were thinking that was bringing us down and enjoy the positive aspects of our present moment. We need to stop trying when the work feels like struggle, and simply focus our attention in a direction that makes us feel better. Only then will we be truly productive.

Even when it feels as if your world is falling apart, there is something in your immediate surroundings that will make you feel good. You simply need to pay attention to it, bravely pointing your mind away from the problem, and allowing yourself to become fascinated with the beauty. You are surrounded by beauty and love, you were just waiting for a sense of completion to enjoy it.

It is time to let yourself enjoy your present moment. Make written lists of the aspects of your life that bring you great joy, and memorize the list. Add to it daily, and you will fortify yourself against the suffering that creeps in, again and again, as you focus on the aspects of your reality that are not to our liking. You will continue to walk through situations that cause negative emotion. That is the nature of life. You do not, however, need to dwell on the negative emotion. You need to learn from it, and you may even choose to act upon what you have learned, but not before you have shifted your emotional tone to one of feeling good. That is how you become a powerful person.

Only once you begin feeling good again can you allow your mind to drift back toward the situation that needs a shift. Now that you are being the happy version of you, your optimistic clarity will make short work of this issue that you previously viewed as an impasse. You have consciously chosen your mood, and are now being a very different person from the role you play then you are unhappy. You are being your true self, rather than shadow-version of your persona that is focused on the negative emotion, and the stories that reinforce that realm of possible reality. Due to your improved mood, you are now filled with motivation to solve this problem, and flow with whatever comes after it. You are enjoying life, and that is the point of all of it. We are not here to suffer, we are here to expand and enjoy the process.

We often find ourselves thinking that our lives are mostly out of our control, and we begin living for a sense of relief from suffering, rather than the joyous exploration of what is possible. This is the perspective that robs humanity of power more than any other. When we lower our standards in this way, down from the pursuit of the only true currency of the soul, pure joy, we find ourselves without authentic motivation. We reach for distractions that hold our attention away from the chores that lie ahead, chores that yield only a brief sense of relief when they are completed. This is not how we are meant to live.

We are joy-seekers. We feel most natural when we are loving what we are doing, and celebrating the mundane in all its glory. Chop wood, carry water. Whatever you do, do it with your whole heart. If you see no way to enjoy the task, there are only two possibilities. Either you need to move on to something else that is more inspiring, or you need to shift your mood. Either way, you must find a way to feel good, because like attracts like. If you want a happy life, you cannot get there from being a miserable person, incessantly complaining about your problems. Look beyond your present perspective, and find a way to be the happy version of you starting right now. This will inevitably lead to your highest levels of motivation and productivity, as well as making the journey deeply gratifying and fun. Enjoying the ride truly does make everything flow better. Best of all, you get to be the real you.

Peace, Joy and Love,
New Video!
   Transcending Fear TV
       Episode Three:
"Relax, Focus and Flow"
Matthieu Ricard

Join Brian and his adventuresome family as they explore the wilds of Australia! This is the first in a series of adventure travel programs that will make you want to get out there and explore your world fearlessly!


Brian Germain's Skydiving Radio Show!
Safety First

As many of you know, Brian has been doing a spot of Skydive Radio called "Safety First". The show has met with rave reviews, and has been helping skydivers all over the world maximize their joy in the sky.
About Transcending Fear

Transcending Fear is an educational organization devoted to teaching the truth about fear, and the most potent methods for coping with acute stress and negative thought-patterns. We offer books, articles, radio and TV interviews, videos and inspirational talks all with the goal of helping people turn their fear into power. In the context of economic crisis, war and climate change, fear management is the most important topic of our time.

In his worldwide speaking tour, Fear Specialist and Keynote Speaker Brian Germain skillfully relates the topic of transcending fear to every aspect of life, from business success to holistic health and wellness, making his inspiring and motivational presentation a perfect fit for nearly any event. From large corporate conferences to small company lunches, from radio and TV interviews to his inspiring videos, Brian's charismatic and entertaining discussion of this profound and meaningful topic consistently upholds our organization's mission statement:

"To help humanity extricate ourselves from the fear-based mentality to one of compassionate motivation, open-minded wisdom and interpersonal harmony.

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