Do you find that you’re sometimes overwhelmed with anxious thoughts? Do you wish that you could just press the off switch on your mind, so you didn’t have to listen to your thoughts going on and on and making you even more worried and anxious?
If you’ve never been able to stop worrying, I’m going to introduce you to 6 truths that will help you zap away those anxious thoughts and loosen their hold over you.
I’ve always been an anxious person and for most of my life I found it impossible to turn off the worries. Perhaps more significantly, I felt it was a part of me, a fundamental part of my character and self-identity that I was never going to change and that I would have to learn to manage as best I could.
I felt the only way to deal with my anxious thoughts was to put them under the microscope, If I analysed them, tried to discover their origin and reasoned with them, I figured, then I’d be able to rationalize them away. Understanding was my go to way to deal with them.
Except if I’m honest this strategy never really worked.
This method was a train track to doom and gloom because one negative, anxious thought led to another until I was swamped. Giving my full attention and spending quality time with my worries, if anything, encouraged them to grow and multiply.
So what changed?
When I was introduced to a deeper understanding of how humans work at a fundamental level known as the Three Principles, my perception completely changed about the nature of my worries. I very quickly realised that these new insights had led me to a very different relationship with my worries, one where I dramatically reduced the time and attention I gave them and subsequently their power over me started to drift away.
So what did l learn?
Many of my anxious thoughts were about me and my relationship with others in my world, or worrying about the future, but once I fully understood that I didn't have to trust or believe them, I began to attach far less importance to them.
If thoughts are not the truth they have no power to hurt us and I no longer needed to cling to my metaphorical teddy for comfort. What was also interesting was that activities I'd always clung to to try and soothe my anxiousness, watching mindless tv or scrolling indiscriminately on facebook , also drifted away.
We can’t control our thoughts and it's impossible for us to control which next thought is going to appear in our mind, in that respect we're not in the driving seat. But where we do have control, is in our decision whether to follow them or not.
Our thoughts and the way in which they come and go, is part of being human and of being conscious beings. We're not flawed or somehow wrong because we have them.
This isn’t about positive thinking or trying to control the down thoughts.
You know one of the ways we try and deal with anxious thoughts is to turn them around, make the positive, reframe them or maybe keep them tightly under control but in a way this is giving ourselves unnecessary work.
If we understand that all thoughts are just passing through and another one will be along very soon, there’s nothing to be done with them.
So what I want you to take away from this is that when we have anxious thoughts, it’s not a reflection of us, it's not about who we are. And if we do have worrying thoughts, we don’t need to follow them and allow them to led us onto the next worry or concern.
There’s nothing to do about an anxious thought except just see it’s simply a thought, one in a long line of thoughts, no more or less important than the one that proceeded it or the one that will come along very soon.
These truths have enabled me to transform my relationship with worry and anxiety and it's been such a relief to let them go. I hope they do the same for you.