26 Feb How the hungry beast controls you
When the Hungry Beast shows up, it takes over your thoughts and feelings. Let’s say you have anxiety about being in new open spaces. The Hungry Beast shouts out: What??!!! Go to the zoo??!!! Are you crazy? That’s dangerous! That’s terrifying! There are so many people there and you don’t know any of them!! These thoughts are then followed by a physical sensation – emotions. The Hungry Beast has made you feel tension, dread, fear, anxiety.
Look at the diagram below. It shows that your thoughts, your feelings and your experiences all influence each other.
The Hungry Beast (HB) screams/makes you think: I can’t go to the zoo with my friends. There’s too much open space and too many people. It would be awful.
HB makes you feel: Scared, anxious, worried
HB controls your response: You don’t go to the zoo.
In this scenario, not only did the HB force you to miss going to the zoo and having a potentially great time with your friends, look at how the thoughts/feeling/responses cycle continues because the Hungry Beast was fed comfort and control:
HB Thought: I don’t have to go to the zoo. I am much safer here at home.
HB Feeling: Calm, secure, less worried.
Your new experience: You stay at home more often.
Your new thoughts: Staying at home calms my fears and makes me feel better. I will stay at home more often.
Can you say, “I have just fed the Hungry Beast!”? Now you will miss out on more activities. As you feed the Hungry Beast, it grows and grows inside of you becoming larger and larger and clearly more difficult to manage. That’s how the anxious mind keeps going and, in fact, often becomes worse.
So, how do you annihilate (meaning to destroy or kill) the Hungry Beast?
You starve it!
When the Hungry Beast last showed up at your party, what did you do to comfort it? Did that feed it?