Originally appeared in Planet Jackson Hole

How people treat you is about them. How you react is about you. Whether you respond from fear or love sets the stage for how the rest of your story unfolds.

From a metaphysical perspective, "a state of being" refers to the predominant lens through which we perceive and interpret the meaning of events in our life. Simply stated, how we react to life events over time forms a pattern, which either leans more toward the frequencies of love or more toward frequencies of fear. The overall pattern forms a "lens"-a state of being in our consciousness, through which we automatically interpret whatever life brings.

Why does this matter? Because the universe matches the energy of our thoughts, beliefs and actions, bringing things into our experience that match the frequency of our energies. While it's helpful to become aware of your "go to" state of being. It is always possible to upgrade.

Appropriate fear

Feeling fear when it is warranted is not the same as living from a place of fear. Fear and its accompanying fight or flight biochemistry are important survival tools when there is something immediately threatening.

The fear lens: ego mind

A fear-based state of being/consciousness does not mean you are walking around terrified all the time. The fear lens generates the underlying perception that life does not support you, evoking a survival state in which you cannot trust you are safe.

The ego is the part of our human psyche that is always poised to view life through "fear-colored" glasses. The fear lens brings endless discontent as you perpetually compare yourself to others, see yourself as the victim of circumstances, and/or feel you're not enough. This lens breeds mistrust, jealousy, and insecurity, undermining happiness, taxing the immune system and dampening well-being.

And by the law of attraction we inform the universe to bring more of the same into our experience.

The love lens: heart and soul

Coming from a loving state of being does not mean you are walking around in bliss loving everyone and everything in your path all the time. Coming from a loving state of being includes using judgment, saying no, and having healthy boundaries.

The human heart and soul are our linkup to the greater love and higher intelligence of creation. As a result, loving states of being can bring impeccable guidance for living our best life. Coming from love means at the deepest level of being you know there is always a higher plan in effect, regardless of how it may seem, and that life is supporting you. Looking at life through this lens supports generosity of spirit, inner peace and contentment, promoting higher states of health and of consciousness.

And by the law of attraction, we inform the universe to bring more of the same into our experience.

Real example: Losing a job via the fear lens

Here's a sample of the fear-based interpretation of losing a job.

"Why me? It's not fair! (Cue the hurt, anger and expletives.) Other employees are worse than I am. How am I ever going to make it in this place? There are no good jobs in this town. Life sucks."

Next, you retell the story to everyone, reigniting your anger, adding more toxicity into your body, and reinforcing the victim role.

Losing a job via the soulful lens

The heart/soul response is very different.

"I am really upset and disappointed. I kind of sensed this might happen given what was going on, but it's still a shock. It still feels awful. What can I learn from this? Was I totally fulfilled in this job? Did I contribute in any way to being let go? What worked for me there and what did not?

"Hmm, this is a chance for me to ask myself what I really want to do next, maybe to revisit goals and dreams I have for my life. I still need to earn some money, so I'll see what's available, check the classifieds and choose something while I sort this out. I'm getting excited about the possibilities and curious how this will all unfold."

Ultimately, it's a choice

Coming from fear limits all aspects of well-being, which feels awful and changes nothing.

Living through the lens of the heart/soul builds a positive response pattern to what life brings, setting the stage for thriving.

If you know there are deep reasons you are not yet able to take the high road even though you'd like to, seek professional help to support the change you want to make. PJH