The Celebrity Therapist

The Celebrity Therapist

The Power of Transforming Fear into Faith

This morning when I woke up I noticed an associate of mine had recently landed a part in a reality television show that was focused on health and well-being. Her role is to help her clients look at what the issues are underneath their inability to take care of themselves.   I realized I had gone out on the same show, but had not been chosen for it.  I suddenly felt that sinking feeling that I am sure you are all familiar with.  Suddenly I noticed my heart beating faster and I was feeling warm all over.  I know that feeling very well and usually behind it is fear and impending doom.   


I was feeling simply afraid.   You know, that feeling when you believe everyone is getting theirs and “why am I not getting mine” or thinking I am about to lose something.   It is that victim mentality that is behind the character defect of simply being in FEAR.  You may be familiar with the acronym for FEAR: False Evidence Appearing Real.  I simply let my thoughts run the show this morning and allowed my fear to take over.  The truth is I am powerless over the outcome of whether or not I am chosen for a television show or for that matter, most things that are contingent upon outside forces.  However, I do have control over my thinking about it.  Yes, I am allowed to acknowledge my disappointment, but when I start telling myself things like “It will never happen for me” or “Why not me” or “Why her” this is a problem. 


When I put myself in the position like I did this morning, I am worrying about problems that don’t even exist.  There is no truth in the fact I will never do television.  In fact, I am beginning filming of Celebrity Rehab 4 in two weeks.  In my book, “The Law of Sobriety”, it asserts that “there is no possibility of living a purposeful life if you are not living in the present, where you can take action, achieve your goals, and fulfill your dreams.”  If I am caught up in a vortex of fear, than how can I possibly help others and do what I am here to do?  


When I have these types of mornings, the first thing I do is breathe.  I take a few deep breaths in through my nose and out through my mouth, and that centers me.  Then I look at the truth of the situation and see where I have created “false evidence appearing real.”  After that, I look at how I can transform the fear into something positive that can enhance my life and the life of others.  Hopefully, as I write this blog, I am helping someone see that they are not alone and that we all have these transient thoughts.  I then go into the opposite of fear, which is faith.  I look at the faulty beliefs I have about a particular situation and replace them with the truth.  In this case, the truth is I am grateful my work has become more spiritual, which aligns with who I truly am and who I am becoming.  Although television is fun and exciting, it is external.  My spiritual work with myself and others is internal, and there is nothing in the world that is more fulfilling than that to me.


Overcoming fear is a process, and the best way to transform fear into something productive, is to recognize that if it is separating you from your spiritual essence, then it may be detrimental to your serenity.  Take a moment and breathe in the following questions and breathe out the answers.  Once you do that, hopefully your fear will subside as mine does when I follow these steps:

Am I reacting out of fear or faith?

Is what I am afraid of moving me away from my spiritual path?

Is what I am afraid of resonating with my truth or from a faulty belief system that no longer serves me?


Is my fear causing me to feel irritable and discontent?

How can I transform my fear into something more positive?

How can I use my fear to help heal myself and serve others?

Sherry Gaba, LCSW, is a Psychotherapist and Life Coach specializing in addictions and other mental health issues, as well as life coaching and helping her clients find their purpose.  Life Coaching can be done by phone or in person.  Sherry is the author of “The Law of Sobriety: Attracting Positive Energy for a Powerful Recovery” and the Life Coach on Celebrity Rehab on VH1.  She has been on Inside Edition, CNN Headline News, Fox New in San Diego, as well as KTLA-TV in Los Angeles.  Sherry’s expertise has been quoted in Cosmopolitan, New York Daily News, the Huffington Post, E-Online, and Elle Online.

  • Sherry Gaba

    I am so sorry for your loss. When you are ready a grief support group can be very healing. My thoughts and prayers go out to you. Sherry

  • Sherry Gaba

    I have worked at many of the Malibu Treatment Centers. Promises is 12 step based. I believe there are many roads to recovery. My seven step program is one such program, but it also works very well in conjunction with a 12 step program. Sherry

  • Sherry Gaba

    What is your resistance? Perhaps you need to step back and look at what is underneath your un-willingness to stick to a program. Maybe you need to find another option. There are many roads to recovery. My book “Law of Sobriety” is another option, however, also works well with the 12 steps. Much luck to you. Sherry

  • larry

    i need to get into aa and stick with it and need a sponser

  • Tracy in the Adirondacks

    Hi Sherry-
    Just curious if you practice and teach the methodology from Promises or AA/NA. Very interested in the first but am currently in a program designed around AA/NA. Thanks, TRacy


    I am also in recovery . alcohol was my drug of choice. I have been experiencing some very uncomfortable moments lately. I feel I’ve allowed myself to get too lonely and too tired. My husband passed away in December of 2006, and I lost it. Lost it all. I didn’t know how to grieve. So everything stayed inside. I’m letting go more and more, but that darn fear, it stops all forward movement, all progress, all hope. I’ve been writing everything down. With some things, I have to write it, read it, ask God to take it from me, and then through it in the trash.

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