Your fearful thoughts are not facts. It’s OK not to believe them.
They are just fearful thoughts.
They pass through your mind out of habit and aren’t meant to be followed or taken seriously.
The mere act of thinking something does not make it true.
This includes thoughts like:
“I’m too afraid to ________.”
“If I do ________, then __________ will happen.”
“No one will ever love me.”
“I’m too stupid to _________.”
“People will make fun of me if I _______.”
“I can’t ________.”
Even if a thought sounds true, it’s more than likely not.
Even if a thought was once true, if it’s no longer helpful, you are completely allowed to disregard that thought and choose another.
A simple example from my life:
My television died. Instead of getting rid of it, I just moved the TV to another side of my living room.
It sat there for weeks. Why? Because I was afraid.
The TV was fairly large and getting rid of it involved me taking it through my crowded neighborhood on a dolly and making my way to a recycling center I had never been to before. The thoughts I let delay me were “people will stare at me,” “people will judge me,” “I’ll drop the TV and people will laugh at me.”
All potentially true thoughts, but not facts.
In a brave moment, I decided to test those thoughts and quickly loaded up the TV and took it through the neighborhood and to the recycling center before I could change my mind.
And guess what?
No one even cared to take a second look at me.
Even more so than that, if they had taken a second look or even yelled something mean or laughed, just the act of pushing through my fear and getting rid of the TV anyway was enough to buffer me from taking any comments too seriously.
This is a purposefully simple example, but I think it can be applied to other situations.
Fearing that you can’t do something does not actually mean that you can’t do it.
Fearing that you will get some unwanted response from an action you want to take does not mean that that response will happen, nor does it mean that you can’t handle the response if it happens.
Fearing that you are a worthless person or have some other “negative” trait does not mean that your vision of yourself is true or that you are actually unlovable.
Your thoughts are not facts.
It’s OK to ignore them.
It’s OK to not believe them.
Only listen to them if they are helpful.
Otherwise, feel free to watch them float by like a cloud, maybe give them a pet name or two and move on to another thought that feels better.