FEARS AND WORRIES SHRINK OUR life by narrowing thoughts and emotions. When gripped by fear of bad things that might happen, the brain goes into survival mode. The fight-or-flight mechanism kicks in and sends signals and hormones to other parts of the brain and the body. These signals control what we attend to, making us problem-focused. The more attention and energy we give to our fear and anxiety, the less we have for other aspects of our lives.