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Mar 05

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Listening To Your Anxiety Messages

Listening To Your Anxiety Messages

Listening To Your Anxiety Messages

When it comes to anxiety, that little voice inside your head can wreck havoc with your peace of mind, as well as your behavior. You may be making lifestyle decisions based on the discussion in your head. Most, if not all, of these messages you’re hearing in your head have been planted there by something, whether external or internal. Either way, you have to be able to sort through those messages to get to what’s real versus what’s perceived. Let’s take a look at some common messages that often go hand-in-hand with anxiety.

I WILL NEVER OVERCOME THIS FEAR

Fear is a major stressor in most of those individuals who have mild to severe anxiety. Many people battling anxiety can be paralyzed at the thought of trying to overcome a fearful situation or thought. The solution? Take one small step forward. This is nothing elaborate, just taking one small step, making one small change, that might alleviate at least a portion of the fear.  I for instance have a fear of heights.  I constantly have to challenge my thinking and that little voice,  and tell it that I can go up high, or over a bridge that is high.   It is not comfortable but I do it.  Each time I challenge myself the fear gets smaller.

I KNOW THINGS WILL GET WORSE:

You see a situation as being bad, and the more you think about it, the more you believe things will get worse. This begins a spiral of heightened anxiety. The solution? Go ahead and imagine the worse. Don’t hold back. Voice it out loud. As you put the worse case scenario into words, you begin to release your worry, and your anxiety starts to lessen.   I have even done this!  It really lessens the fear.  I have allowed myself to imagine what I think is the worst thing…everyone has something they think they could never overcome.  Let your mind go there and ask what would you do?  Once you see that you could make choice and manage, the fear pops like a pinprick in a balloon.

I AM GOING CRAZY:

When you have a multitude of thoughts racing around in your head, it can feel overwhelming, out of control. Things start to become a blur of confusion, chaos ensues, and that’s when your anxiety skyrockets. The solution? Stop the madness! Literally. Put a stop to everything you are doing – everything.  One coping technique I have used is to draw an actual stop sign in my mind and really visualize it.  It stops my thoughts in their track and redirects my thinking.  Give yourself a break – for a minute, for an hour, or even a day. When you are ready, come back into your world with the realization that you are not, in fact, going crazy. Your brain was just spinning like a hamster wheel and you had to stop it and get off. Now, focus on doing one thing at a time.   I often put on spa music or new age music and let my mind calm down.

I KNOW SOMETHING BAD IS GOING TO HAPPEN:

Worrying about what bad thing is going to happen next is not uncommon. Being certain that bad things are around every corner can be anxiety. No matter how much you play something out in your mind, you won’t be able to predict the future. Why? Because you don’t have complete control over all the factors that make up any event. The solution? Plan ahead for the things you do have control over – your words, your reactions, your actions. That’s the proper way to handle any situation as it unfolds. Of course bad things happen to everyone at some time. We all live through bad times. If you are paralyzed by the thought of bad things happening, anxiety may be at the root.

I NEED TO BE WORRYING ABOUT THIS:

Worry is something we all do to some degree. But, when worry consumes you and limits your normal activities, this is the foundation of anxiety. For some, much of their anxiety is self-imposed, caused by finding things to worry about, as if it were their mission in life. The solution? Write out a list of worries that cause you anxiety. Then rank each worry in order of severity. Now take any worry off your list that you have absolutely no control over. You should now be looking at a list of things that you can learn how to handle in such a way as to not cause anxiety.

I HAVE NO CONTROL:

In reality, you are neither totally without control or totally in control of any situation. Feeling that you have no control may cause anxiety. The solution? Control what you can; your actions and your reactions. Take a situation, perhaps something that’s already happened, and decide what you could have controlled and what was outside of your control. Be realistic and don’t fill in the event with ghosts of conversations or actions that didn’t occur. Just think of what was in your power to control (again, your actions and reactions) and play out the scene with those items. Now you see how you might turn that event or a similar episode around to be something you can handle without becoming anxious.

I CAN NEVER OVERCOME THIS EVEN WITH HELP:

Helplessness is a serious contributor to anxiety. If you feel helpless, you’ll feel hopeless. That’s when the feeling of losing control can take over and you may become fearful. Again, the spiral leads downward into anxiety. The solution? If you fall into the trap of believing that nothing can help, educate yourself by researching, reading, and asking others for advice. Call on professional help and be honest. Explain that you believe your anxiety is helpless, and hopeless. That is what taking action is all about.
The conversation you are having with yourself is really a learning tool. What are you telling yourself about your limitations, conditions, weaknesses, and helplessness? When the phrases pop into your head, there is something going on that you need to put in perspective, talk through, and learn from. Follow these suggestions and see if you can put your mind to rest and send anxiety packing!

*Disclaimer:  Please note every effort has been made to include accurate information, but further research and the advice of a physician is highly recommended before starting any of the anxiety management ideas listed.

Permanent link to this article: https://inspiringwordsfromtheheart.com/listening-anxiety-messages/

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