I am someone who you could say is a natural worrier. I suffered from constant anxiety when I was a child. It continued until I was an adolescence and, up to early adulthood. No one would of thought that I suffered from depression and anxiety, because I was taught early on how to manage it by my parents who practiced Buddhism. I had a very unstable childhood after my parents divorced. My mother struggled as a single parent and my farther spent a large part of my childhood dealing with alcoholism. As time went on things got progressively better, but I had always this lingering fear hanging over me that things would go wrong and lead me back to a life of instability.
It has taken me years to learn how to manage my mind and find the balance between negative and positive thinking. I have tired many different methods to manage the anxiety that can be created by negative thinking. It is partly due to these experiences I became a Life Coach. I realized that there were lots of people like me.
I would like to share some basic methods with you that helped me. I can’t begin to express how dangerous it can be if negative thoughts are allowed to take over. It can suck the joy and peace from your everyday existence. It is very important to have the tools needed to manage worry and anxiety.
Thoughts create our reality. No one is saying that you need to be the most positive thinker in the world, but being in a neutral zone is better than a negative one.
Extended negative thinking has been proven to lead to depression and anxiety. A depressed mind leads to a depressed immune system. It has been said by psychologist that humans are evolutionarily wired with a negativity bias. Our minds naturally focus on the bad and discard the good. The brain can be like “Velcro for negative experiences and Teflon for positive ones.”
Our negative thoughts can give us a warped vision of our life. The most damaging part is that these negative thoughts can lead us to make life changing decisions from a place of fear, which is not a place from where we want to make decisions.
So how can you support yourself if you have tendencies to worry and focus on the negative?
Here are 5 tips that are easy and simple to use.
1. Keep a journal: Writing down what you are thinking is very useful. Your thoughts need somewhere to go because, if they stay in your mind they will just keep turning until you pay attention to them. Get the thoughts down on paper. This will help to give you some insight into how you are thinking. Sometimes we don’t realized how much negative thinking or worrying we do but, when its down on paper you will be shocked at the things you think and how often you think them. This is the first step to getting conscious about your thinking patterns. You can’t change a pattern until you know what the pattern is and how it works.
2. 5 Second rule : The 5 second rule is a method created by Mel Robbins. The five-second rule works much like a pattern interrupter. The five second rule helps block negative self talk and, helps you take action. You will begin to build new ways of thinking and new behaviors that allow you to achieve more of what you want: more action, more focus, more confidence, more skill and, ultimately, be more authentic and real. To learn more about it here is free pdf where Mel Robbins explains the technique:The 5 Second Rule_ Transform Your Life, Wo – Mel Robbins
3. Meditation. I have used meditation since I was a little girl. Meditation helps to give you distance from your thoughts. It is in that space that we find freedom from negative thoughts and worry. You do not have to be a spiritual person to learn meditation. I recommend going to a group when you are first starting out it is very useful. It enables you to be able to ask questions and be supported by others. It has been shown that even 10 mins of meditation can have a positive effect. There is great book written by Wayne Dyer called “Getting in the Gap”. Here is link where he explain how powerful that space between our thoughts is :GettingintheGapwithWayneDyer
4. Spiritual Practice/Helping Others : If you are a spiritual or religious person become active in practicing your beliefs. Get support from your community. Spiritual practices and text can assist in leading your mind, body and spirit to more peaceful place. Many spiritual practices and techniques try to teach how to free the mind of doubt, fear, and allow the divine to assist on you on your journey of life.
Wether you are spiritual or not, just start helping others. When we volunteer our time, money, and energy to help others it doesn’t just make the world better, it also makes you feel better. Studies have shown that the act of giving back to the community boosts your happiness, health, and sense of well-being.
5. Get Professional Assistance: If you have identified that your state of mind is not in a healthy place and you find that you can not manage on your own to stabilize your thinking it is recommend to get professional help such as: Cognitive Therapy, Psychotherapy, and in minor or mild cases a Life Coach that is trained in Wellness and Personal development can be helpful. Whoever you choose verify their qualifications and that they use a method that corresponds to your situation.
I hope that these basic tips encourage people who may be suffering from excess worry or negative thinking to get some support.
If negative thinking, depression, or anxiety has been an issue for you I would like to hear your stories and how you got help. I am here to support anyone who may need assistance on how to get help also.