Let Go Of Worries
So you love to worry. You worry about people you love, you worry about your work. No big deal, right? Everybody gets worried. It’s completely normal. Or is it? Perhaps it’s the over worrying you should be worried about!
There is nothing normal about anxiety disorder. If you really get worried about the simplest thing then you should take it seriously and try to overcome it. Anxiety disorder can arise from three sources. They are-
- Outer world. Everything related to outer world activities are known as realistic anxiety.
- Human behavior like love, anger, sex, etc. related anxiety.
- Super ego related anxiety.
According to Psychoanalysis theory, human’s upbringing plays vital role in developing anxiety disorder. Our personality is another vital reason behind it. But let’s not worry about that. We can’t change how we grew up and we can’t change who we are. We can’t reverse time and stop anxiety disorder before happening. What we can do, is fight it and control it before it controls us.
To fight anxiety disorder, first we have to know the symptoms. Well, the symptoms are pretty easy to detect. If you are suffering from anxiety disorder, you get worried about the simplest of thing. You get restless, and then you become afraid. You can’t sit on a place. You go on about the matter over and over. You keep people asking about it. You try to stop doing everything that makes you worried. Eventually you become frightened of normal day to day activities.
If your anxiety disorder is in advanced level, then you should definitely get some help from psychiatrists. But if it is not, then you can fight it with positive and rational thinking. Whenever you get worried, just go through the following steps.
- Ask yourself if your worry is really valid. Try to think rationally. There is always the chance that whatever you are worrying about isn’t actually something to be worried about.
- Sit on a spot. No matter how tough it is to sit still, don’t pace about.
- Tell yourself that by worrying, you are not helping anyone. You are just making situations complicated.
- Keep yourself telling that if this situation was indeed worth worrying, then perhaps the person or matter you are worrying about, needs your help or needs adjusting. Now if you keep worrying, you won’t be able to think straight hence you won’t be able to solve the problem.
- Finally, make yourself busy. Do something. Do anything that keeps your mind away from worrying. Do something that needs your attention. Do the dishes or cook your favorite food. Listen to music or watch a movie. Just don’t allow your mind to ponder over the matter and make you all worried.
When you over worry, you lose control over your life. So fight anxiety disorder. Because you are not letting some stupid anxiety disorder, control your life.
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Let’s review briefly. When you first notice yourself obsessing, begin by accepting it. Then choose either to postpone the obsession or modify the way you are obsessing.
After you have done either of those two, then your next task is to let go of those worries and return to your daily activities. If you’re like most people, you will become physically tense and anxious when you try to stop these thoughts, so you also need to let go of those tensions.
There’s two steps to take at this point. The first is to decide to stop the intrusive thoughts or images and reinforce your decision with positive statements to yourself. Mentally support yourself by saying such things as, “That thought isn’t helpful to me right now; now is not the time to think about this; this is irrational, I’m going to let it go; I’m not about to argue with this thought.” Literally sub-vocalize this kind of statement, and help yourself believe your own words. Don’t just mentally recite lines you don’t hold to be true.
Before you practice any of these options, be sure that you are really committed to getting rid of the particular worries you are addressing. Make this decision during a time when you are not in the throes of your obsessions–when you are feeling relatively calm and can gain perspective. Make sure this is a firm decision. Then choose an automatic response that reflects your position. For instance, you might decide that the next time you notice that you’re worrying, you will write down, verbatim, every thought that comes into your mind until you start repeating your statements. Then you will tell yourself, “I know these worries are irrational. I’m ready to move on now.”
So the first step in letting go of your obsessions is to make this clear and committed statement of intent. The second is to practice some brief relaxation technique. There are a few simple straightforward breathing skills that can be used at this time to help with letting go of your tensions. In the Don’t Panic Self-Help Kit, I have created a separate tape to help you practice those skills. When you are ready to learn them, listen two or three times to the tape entitled “Practicing Your Breathing Skills.” Your ability to relax your body on cue in a brief period of time may require some repetition of these skills. So once you learn the breathing skills–like the Calming Breath or Calming Counts– practice them 10 – 15 times a day for several weeks. They take less than a minute and a half to practice. So use them during times of transition, such as right after you get off the phone or while waiting in the car at a stoplight. Then they will be ready for you during tense times.
Again, let me advise you to use breathing skills to help you when you are letting go of your obsessions and trying to relax your body and quiet your mind. They are a very helpful part of your program. So if you are using the Kit, start listening to the breathing skills tape in the next day or two, and learn to apply those techniques.
“I vow to let go of all worries and anxiety in order to be light and free.” ~Thich Nhat Hanh
When you think about the future, are you filled with hope or worry? If you are like most people, it’s probably anxiety. You have largely been experiencing worry. Your mind feels unsettled.
Worry arises because you realize that you cannot predict what is going to happen tomorrow and know that you cannot have full control over how events turn out. You are uncomfortable with not having absolute certainty.
Incessant worrying happens when you find it hard to let go. You fret over the same details repeatedly. A fertile imagination causes you to play out mental scenarios of doom, failure, and fatal consequences over and over again.
I Was a Worry Wart
Well, I used to worry incessantly over the smallest of things. Before learning meditation, I did not know how to relax. Worry was my psychological mantra.
When my children were born, my anxiety levels went into over-drive. Were they eating enough? Were they having a happy time with their friends? Were they faring well in school?
I soon realized that I was not the only one. In talking with one of my girlfriends, I realized she was excessively worrying over her children, too. I noticed how tense she was. She was not fun to be with.
Eventually I knew that I needed to reclaim my sanity. Not doing so would mean continued misery. I realized that it was only when I could lose my back load of worries could I be light and free.
Once I made a commitment, I started looking into the true nature of my emotions. Even though I continue to have my worries, I am now better able to cope with them. I no longer obsess over every detail either.
Here is what I discovered.
What Worry Is
The mind likes to anchor itself to the known, which creates anxiety. Worry is a symptom of the deeper-rooted fear you experience when you have to tread into the unknown.
You prefer things to be predictable. You fear that any unexpected turn in events would throw your meticulous planning into disarray. The more energy you give to your fears, the more anxious you become.
In reality, all forms of worry represent an underlying lack of trust. You are unable to trust in the goodness of life. Even though things could turn out in a number of ways, you have a tendency to believe that things are going to turn out negative rather than positive.
Worry displaces. You become ungrounded. With your mind constantly in the future, it is difficult to be present. You lose the capacity to experience life in the here and now. With worry, you deny yourself the opportunity of living your moments in freedom.
Worrying causes you to leak energy. You feel low. You are more apt to complain about things and compare yourself with others, and you’re less likely to be rational. Excessive worrying can cause you to stifle your dreams.
Your relationships with others get affected, too. No one likes being near a prophet of doom and gloom.
Healthy Ways to Deal with Worry
It is important to recognize that uncertainty is a natural part of life. You cannot know with absolute certainty what is going to happen next. When you release your attachment to control, it’s easier to breathe.
Some people deal with anxiety by drinking, overeating, and turning to other bad habits. However, none of these are real solutions for worrying. The best approach is to learn how to deal with your anxiety in healthy ways.
1. Work it off.
Although exercise may not actually solve the issues that are causing you to feel anxious, engaging yourself in activity takes your mind off things. You become clearer after taking a break.
2. Address your fears.
Instead of suppressing your anxiety, it is important to face your fears head on. Ask yourself what is truly causing your anxiety. You may even find that your worries are mostly False Evidence Appearing Real.
Meditation helps your mind with needed breaks from all that clutter. The practice also helps you with greater focus. You find yourself experiencing increased clarity and less likely to worry over unnecessary things.
4. Stay hydrated.
Did you know that dehydration has been linked to depression? Just about every person has heard that it is important to drink enough water, but most people do not realize that their mental health actually improves when they are hydrated.
5. Change your perspective.
Energy flows where you focus your attention. Understand that you can choose to focus on positive rather than negative thoughts. In fact, as you become more positive, you’ll be better able to create more positive outcomes.
It’s hard not to feel bombarded living in modern times. You probably spend your days in a constant state of flux. Your heart beats a lot faster as a result. So set aside time to relax. You’ll find that your feelings of anxiety subside.
7. Seek help.
You may find yourself feeling worse and worse if you are unable to stop yourself from incessant worrying. It may be a good idea to seek counseling or to talk to someone who can help. Anxiety is very common. There is nothing to feel ashamed about when you approach for help.
The best way find relief from constant worrying is to learn to let go. Worrying does not bring you any closer to solving problems. In fact, it only makes it more difficult to find clarity.
Make a commitment to reducing your anxiety levels today. It starts with a simple choice.
Woman meditating image via Shutterstock
About Evelyn Lim
Evelyn Lim enjoys sharing the philosophy of “mastering self, manifesting abundance.” Her life took a dramatic change for the better after she went on an inward journey. For practical tips, insights, and inspiration, please subscribe to receive weekly updates from her site, Abundance Tapestry.
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