Also known as stress, overthinking, worry, agitation, inability to relax, obsessive thoughts.
All people have anxiety sometimes but we can also say that some more than others.
Generally, people who suffer from anxiety do so because it makes it impossible for them to enjoy life and they do not feel calm and totally happy.
Here are some strategies that can help you reduce anxiety. Tools that can help you gain ground in controlling your thoughts and gaining self-confidence.
ANALYZE THE THOUGHTS THAT TORMENT US:
1) Name the monster: If you want to deal with and ultimately control an obsessive thought, you’ll need to identify the idea that obsesses you. What does it consist of? where does your fear lie? what is the doubt? The answer to these questions can be written in a sentence with a few words. Put a number on it, how dangerous is that thought
2) Find the distortion: Once you have named the fear or doubt in question, try to understand the thought distortion. For example, if your thinking is extremist (all or nothing type), jumps to conclusions without prior reflection, is exaggerated, or extreme negativist, etc.
3) Procrastinate and write: Schedule a time each day when you feel free from rumination. When an obsession comes just tell yourself, “Sorry, no time for that. You’ll have to wait until 8 p.m., or when I spend 15 minutes filling my head with obsessions.” In this way you can encourage keeping a diary in which all unfavorable thoughts or doubts are written down: “I am a lousy writer, a spiteful woman, incapable of making friends, of enjoying life, etc.”
4) Laugh at your problem: Laughter can make almost any situation tolerable. Admittedly, there is something that can be more fun than listening to a broken record inside your head. Believe yourself capable of developing that faculty. If he couldn’t laugh at his depression, anxiety, and pessimistic musings, he might go crazy, which is to say, more than he already is.
5) Arouse your attention: Put a rubber band around your wrist, and every time you are surprised by an obsessive thought, of those that you have learned to identify, stretch the rubber band and rest it on the skin as a reminder. Another behavioral technique is to write the specific obsession on a piece of paper, then crumple it up and throw it away, so you have literally thrown away your obsession. Another way is to visualize a stop sign, and every time you become aware of an obsession think and visualize that sign carefully.
6) Get off the highway of thought: Imagine driving a car down the highway. Every time you find yourself being approached by your obsessive thoughts again, imagine stopping the car and pulling over. So ask yourself: Do I have to change anything? Can I change it? Can I modify the situation in some way? Do I do everything I need to do to be calm? So it can take a minute to ask yourself these and any other questions that come to mind. If there’s nothing you can do about it, or you realize there’s nothing really to fix, then it’s time to start your car, get back on the road, and be on your way.
In this visualization you will be trying to make the difference between what you can and cannot change. Once you’ve made this distinction, it’s time to start driving again (get on with your business).
7) Learn the lesson: It is common to obsess over your own mistakes. When you mess up, you tend to berate yourself obsessively for not doing things right from the start, especially when you’ve inadvertently hurt other people. So you may ask: What is the lesson here? What have you learned? Just like the first step (when the obsession is baptized), you’ll need to describe the lesson you’ve learned in a short sentence. For example, berating a younger sibling, friend, lover, or child for believing they did something wrong.
8) Forgive yourself: After learning the lesson you must learn to forgive yourself. This, however, is a particularly sticky point for perfectionists, and guess what…perfectionists are quintessential ruminators. Julia Cameron writes about this in “The Artist’s Way”:
9) When analyzing the thought, think about the cause: Often the object of the obsession is not the real problem. That person, object or situation is masking a more fundamental problem, but we are too afraid to face it head-on. For example, a neighbor who becomes obsessed with putting up a fence in his backyard because, unlike his wife’s incurable disease, over which he has no control, the fence itself can be manipulated and fixed ad nauseam. Another case is that of a woman who used to fantasize at work about a colleague who was obsessively attracted to her, get married and leave in order to escape from the painful situation that resulted in supporting three small children and their mother. His obsessions weren’t about his colleague, but about his need for a little fun and relief from his situation.
Perfectionism is refusing to move forward. It is a loop, a closed, obsessive and debilitating system that makes you get stuck in the details of what you are writing, painting or doing, and lose sight of the final purpose. Instead of flowing freely and allowing for minor errors, it manifests itself later in ideas where we get stuck while we try to conceive of the smallest details. We correct our originality into a uniformity that lacks passion and spontaneity. Forgiving oneself means specifying the knowledge acquired regarding our mistakes, and leaving aside the rest.
How to be more flexible?: break schemes, if you always buy the pink color, dare to buy the blue one, if you sleep with two pillows one day, force yourself and remove one. Imagine that you are someone else. Open your mind to see different things.
FEAR OF DEATH
Many times the root of anxiety is because the person is afraid of dying. Dying is not so bad, it is part of life. Understand death. Visit cemeteries, think how bad it can be. Imagine the worst: This may produce even more anxiety at first, but imagining the worst can actually alleviate the fears that trigger the obsession. For example, when Jorge was hospitalized for the second time due to severe depression, he was petrified to think that he would never be able to go back to work, write again and contribute something to society. I was literally shaking with anxiety and thinking about his death. So severe was his fear of what the disease could do to him. He called a friend and told him about his fears. “Uh-huh…” said the friend, “so what?” Jorge, surprised, explained to him again to the point that he could lose everything. “Yes,” replied the friend, “so what?” “Can’t you write anymore?…no problem; can’t you work anymore?…no problem. You have a family who loves and accepts you, you have a friend who understands and loves you. stopped writing or working and it’s just a matter of taking a look around you to realize everything you really have.”
WAIT – ALLOW TIME
Put it on hold: Sometimes it’s possible to obsess over a situation about which you don’t have much information. For example, the delicate situation of a family member who has just undergone surgery, or the son who is traveling alone for the first time, etc. So, stop your thinking and reflect: How much information do you have so far? Based on that information, what plan can you follow? If your answer is: none or very little, you will realize that there is no point in worrying. Put your obsession on hold, like a dress or electronics you can’t afford yet. The item will still be there, in the display case, waiting for you.
TALK TO SOMEONE YOU TRUST
We all know how quickly an obsession can take on a life of its own. A small problem in a project turns into a huge obstacle, a gesture of friendship from a friend turns ugly and threatening, and a little criticism from a colleague turns into a 150-page thesis about his flaws and inadequacies, you know , everything that’s bad for you and why you shouldn’t have gotten out of bed that morning. Behind any obsession, a gesture, a simple observation or a small difficulty, it can become a real existential problem. That is why he needs good friends to help him separate fact from fiction. In the company of a good counselor, you can end up laughing at your exaggerations and see the true dimension of the matter.
Stay in the present: You may grit your teeth every time people say this to you, because you are a quintessential past and future ruminator. We hardly think about the now all the time, however, staying in the present is sound advice. When you are grounded, in the moment, you are not dwelling on the bad things that may happen in the future, or dwelling on the unfortunate mistakes of the past.
In order to “get into” your present, you need to first pay attention to your senses. Try to listen, for example, to all the sounds that surround you right now: a bird, a dog, a car, or perhaps the tolling of bells from a nearby church. If you give yourself the task of listening to real sounds around you, you will not be able, during that time, to dwell on your past or future fears. Take time for each thing you do, and focus all your attention on that specific thing.
THE BIG PICTURE and FOCUS ON THE POSITIVE
When you’re deep in your worry fly to the sky and describe yourself as if you were someone else watching you. Say to yourself: “Look at this person, who is healthy, has a job, a family that loves him…”.
If your thought is “that person doesn’t love me, treats me badly, doesn’t care about me…” then replace it with who does love you, who cares about you.
EVERY MOMENT WILL PASS
Remember in the past when you had problems and they were solved, the same will happen now. Remember the story of the king with the ring. If you don’t know, tell Valeria to tell you.