How do I overcome the fear of death?
Some background, some drama
The fear of death affects millions of people worldwide. For some people, it can produce anxiety and/or obsessional thoughts. One of the most common fears is the fear of death. Some anxiety problems actually create the fear of death on their own. Some make anxiety disorders worse or more common, and some are completely independent - the fear of death may be a phobia itself, and not the result of an anxiety symptom.
The fear of death is a common cause and effect of anxiety, and even those without anxiety often experience this fear in some ways.
Do’s and Don’ts
Death can be an especially frightening thing to think about, primarily because it exposes the limits of life and what we are able to conceive. Learn to focus on what you can actually control while still engaging with what you cannot. Guide your life. Allow room for the unexpected. The “How Do I" series tries to list down a few Do’s and don’ts to guide and help you to overcome the fear of death.
- Take control of your life. Try new things. Challenge yourself. Keep active and engaged with positive activities. If there is something that really rankles you do something about it.
- Accept that death is natural. We are part of a great cycle, where everyone must go through the same thresholds: conception, birth and death.
- Spend quality time with the people you enjoy being around.
- Focus on living well. Explore your passions. If you are busy living, you won't have time to worry about dying.
- Develop an end-of-life plan with your family and friends. Set all your affairs in order to keep your family and legacy secure.
- Don’t live each day in anticipation of death. Death is inevitable. But, that doesn’t mean we live each day lifelessly.
- Don’t give into unproductive and negative thought patterns. Replace unproductive emotions with positive thinking.
- Don’t spend the whole day or life worrying. Instead have a specific worry time period. This will help you have happier days and less worrying.
- Don’t be anxious all the time. Instead get into a habit of relaxing and letting go of anxieties. You’ll notice that you'll just start to feel so much better about it.
You’ve lived a good life. You have created a community of friends, relatives and colleagues who have been with you through all your good times and bad. It should be noted that death is more of a universal fear. You can have a fear of death without having an anxiety disorder, since death is something that most people fear at some point in their lives. Of course all of us have this fear. It’s important to accept that death is a natural progression of life and not let the fear of death ruin your life. After all life is beautiful; it’s important to live it to the fullest.