Stop worrying. Easier said than done. Many of us are prone to worrying excessively, particularly in this day and age. Yet does that mean we can’t do anything about it? No. Most people who worry chronically become consumed and entangled in their own thoughts and emotions of waiting for bad things to happen. They become engulfed with fear over possibilities of disaster or some dreaded or undesired event happening. People who worry excessively become non-productive and disillusioned.
Everyone worries at different times, however many successful people have come through worrisome adversities and have come through miles ahead. Studies indicate that these people have certain techniques they use to minimise the worry by turning it into something positive and productive. Here are a few of the habits that non-worriers incorporate in their lives to lessen the impact of worry:
- Maintain perspective – People who do not worry out of context (let’s just say non-worriers, for simplicity) are able to detach themselves from a worrisome situation so they can increase perspectives on the matter. They think about what can happen and then evaluate it according to how likely it is to happen. For example, someone may worry about having an airplane accident, yet the chances of having an accident are very minimal.
- Raise questions in their minds – When worries and/or negative thoughts begin to fill a non-worrier’s mind, he or she is able to ask fitting questions such as, “Do I have control over the problem” and “Is it an imminent threat?” The answers to these questions and others can help to face the situation or greatly reduce the worry.
- They are confident they can handle the problem – Non-worriers seem to have inherently more confidence than people who worry chronically or consistently. Non-worriers are able to face situations and cope with them better. Worriers tend to be fearful that they won’t be able to handle a catastrophe and fear ‘breaking down’.
- Non-worriers focus on the present moment – Having the ability to stay in the present moment and not get fixated by the possibility of future happenings is vital to reducing worry. Worriers tend to project themselves into a future where turmoil and chaos is the only outcome.
- Non-worriers take more chances – Worriers have a difficult time making decisions when their brains are consumed with the possibilities of catastrophic outcomes. Non-worriers are more able to make a quicker decision about a problem and then proceed to something else. People who worry too much tend to exaggerate the chances of something dreadful happening. Being overly fearful holds them back.
Worry is almost always non-productive. It eats away at our energy levels, and really gets us nowhere. Non-worriers seem to be more able to practice mindfulness and work through a stressful event or thought without becoming plagued by the negative thought. Delaying the worry helps to figure out a solution to the problem and to have a better outcome. Not everything needs to be solved or answered immediately.
Everybody will still experience some level of worry and anxiety however, because we are human. Nevertheless, here are a couple more things you can practice which could be useful:
- Acknowledge your feelings worries, or anxiety. It usually won’t do you much good to fight the feelings, so just acknowledge them and observe why you’ve having them. Is it from a past experience? If so, you can begin to consider those feelings for what they are – unfounded fear — and then let them go.
- Don’t engage the worries. When you acknowledge your worries rather than fighting them, you can treat them like passing cloudy weather. But, when you focus on the worries, it’s difficult to let them go and get on with your present life.
There are particular self-help techniques which may help chronic worriers deal better with negative thoughts and situations. Therapy, such as CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) may be needed to help worriers focus on the present moment and make the right decisions, if things really start to get out of hand. You can find some great resources with information about psychologists, psychiatrists and so-forth by visiting Your Health in Mind, and My Mental Health (north Brisbane)
Paul Inglis.[contact-form-7 404 "Not Found"]