How to get rid of anxious thoughts, and worry?
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Worry, and other uneasy feelings are part of our lives, and everyone experiences them in some way. Some people worry about little things, some people worry about big things, and others worry about everything.
Oftentimes worry is light enough to allow us to be quickly back on track with our lives. Sometimes worry can be a tool used to prod you to do your best at a task. But sometimes worry becomes first a recurring feeling then increases in intensity, and finally becomes overwhelming, and start interfering with living the life you want. Constant worrying is a problem because it holds you back by keeping you stuck in negative thoughts, and emotions. You might worry about your job because you’re worried how you’ll pay the mortgage, or put food on the table if you lost it.
These what-if thoughts aren’t the foundation behind the worrying that’s built up in your life. What causes you to worry is the thought that something bad, or unfavorable toward you is going to happen.
What worriers have a tendency to do is to create scenarios in their mind of these probably future situations. Don’t give the worries any power within your mind. If your worry comes from focusing on the future, the key to get rid of anxiety is focusing on the present.
Take 1 minute right now, and focus on an object you like around you. Its color, shape, position. If something keep you attention away, just come back, and focus on the object. A nice variation of this exercise comes from Locke Hughes at webmd.com; he suggests the 3-3-3 rule, that is: look around, and name 3 things you see; then name 3 sounds you hear; finally move 3 parts of your body……
How mindfulness lets you be in charge
Changing your mindset to focus on the now is the key to get rid of anxious thoughts, and overcoming worry, stress, and uncertainty. Mindfulness is the practice of living in the present moment, and will allow you to be in charge. Regardless of what type of chaos you’ve experienced, or are going through now, mindfulness can help.
Mindfulness calms the anxiety, and lets you be in charge of what you need to take care of. During turmoil, your mind gets an influx of negative thoughts, and when someone doesn’t practice mindfulness, those thoughts then cause the emotions to become more intense.
Mindfulness doesn’t stop the negative emotions from coming, but it helps you to be in charge of what’s going on in your mind, and with your emotions because it lets you go through the thoughts that are trying to stampede.
Mindfulness brings a peace to the negative emotions, and thoughts so that you’ll be aware of them, but they won’t control you, and you’ll be able to stop feeling anxious. Mindfulness will allow you to keep order in your thoughts, and emotions even when everything around you is in crisis.
Maybe you won’t get rid of anxious thoughts, but you will get rid of their negative effects. Take 1 minute right now, close your eyes, and just feel your emotions. Feel them coming, feel them stay where they are, feel them go (if they go)…..
Your current present is your first barrier to get rid of anxious thoughts.
People resist being mindful about the present because of fear about what they don’t know what mindfulness is. That can cause them not to want to have anything to do with being mindful about the present. What is happening now in their life right is often the cause to resist being mindful about the present.
If they’re going through a time where things are wonderful in their present, they can be reluctant to be mindful because they fear losing what they have. But if your present is good, mindfulness will make it much better.
It’s the same way if things are bad in their present. In this case people resist being mindful about the present because they fear losing control. They think that if things are bad even if they’re trying to solve them, things will become worst if they just focus on the present, and stop trying. Similarly, worry is an attempt to control the future, and arises from the fear of losing what people have right now, or that current things will get worse if they are currently bad. If they let go worrying, they think things will become even worse. So to get rid of your anxious thoughts, you must get rid of your fear of losing what you have, and your fear of losing control. You can understand now that the opposite is true: if you focus on the present, you’ll stop wasting unnecessary energy, and eventually you’ll start focusing on what you can do here, and now.
Take 1 minute right now, look around, and just write on sheet of paper what you have here, and now….
Accept and empower yourself with mindful strategies
Living in the present moment is at the core of accepting, and empowering yourself with mindful strategies. You can teach your mind to accept yourself, and gain empowerment -, or you can stay stuck in self-defeating behaviors, like worrying. The choice is yours.
Your brain can be wired to think, or cause you to act in a certain way based on how you handle your mind’s ability to tap into your subconscious mind. Once you learn to accept yourself, you’ll be able to have compassion for yourself, too.
Meditation, which is essentially “observing your thoughts”, is a strategy that you can use to achieve mindfulness in order to accept, and empower yourself, and is the starting point to stop spiraling negative thoughts…
Stop anxious thoughts
As Dr. Michael Stein says at aada.org, negative thoughts are just negative thoughts. They are not facts, and they are not meaningful. Their content is not important, but is important how you treat your mind, and deal with them. If you give them importance, they’ll have. Just ignore them, and keep going what you were doing.
Meditation calls for you to be aware of the thoughts that you think about yourself rather than simply letting them pass through your mind, and alter your behavior. Observing them detached from their content is the simple way to increase your awareness, as you can see cars on the road pass in front of you.
Take 1 minute right now, and start observing your thoughts. Just stay there, and observe your thoughts. Become aware of what is going in your mind…
Get rid of anxious thoughts by welcoming them
A variation of this exercise comes from Nicole Spector at nbcnews.com. The tip comes from a professional counselor that suggests taking a few deep breaths, and thanking your negative thoughts for the help they’re trying to give you. Negative thoughts can come from parts of your mind that feel you in some kind of danger, and are trying to induce you in action to deal with it. Oftentimes this comes from the oldest parts of our mind that classifies stressful situations, or things over which we have no control as dangerous.
So take 1 minute right now, and start observing your thoughts. Welcome them, thank them for the help they are trying to give you, tell them goodbye, and then let them go. This is another good way to stop the anxiety spiral..
From negative thinking to positive options
Whenever any negative self-talk pops into your mind, you can also make a conscious choice to stop, and correct the thought. With practice, and time, you can re-educate your mind to let go worry, and replace it with thoughts that are more useful, and will be the seed for a more effective direction to your actions and reduce anxiety.
Then take another minute, and start observing your thoughts again. However, this time every time you have a negative thought, write down on a sheet of paper a positive opposite empowering thought. For example if you observe “I can’t do it”, you could write down “I can learn to do it”. Don’t worry if you find yourself writing down the same positive thought many times. It’s part of the learning process.
Gradually the new thoughts will replace the older ones, and you’ll be finally able to get rid of anxious thoughts…
Focus on the outcomes
As you learn to stop negative thoughts, mindfulness will start increasing your effectiveness. Studies have shown that people who practice mindfulness have a greater output than those who don’t. Plus, using techniques involved in mindfulness can help you maintain a clear focus, and lead to the ability to make better choices for productivity.
Mindfulness enables you to find an inner satisfaction with whatever it is that you’re doing which lets you be fully engaged in the task. In addition, it can eliminate the pressure, and give you the freedom to calmly think through the steps that you need to take.
With mindfulness comes gradually a greater sense of confidence in your abilities, and in your skills. Take 1 minute right now, and focus on the outcome you’d like about an issue that is concerning you. Let pass any negative thoughts, just focus on the outcome you’d like.
Then take 1 more minute, and start writing down the steps you need to take about the issue. Every time you have a negative thought, write down also a positive thought as you did in the previous exercise.
Shifting your thoughts from performance to outcomes will help you to focus on what you are doing and right now and enjoy your present moment.
Focusing on the outcomes is a very good way to get rid of anxious thoughts because will redirect them from worry to a desired new state. This is an essential prerequisite for finally taking action…..
Remeber that nothing calms anxiety like taking action. Take the first action you wrote in the list, and start doing it right now. If you have any difficulty in doing it, observe your negative thoughts, and write down a positive thought instead as we did before. Do this even if you find yourself writing always the same positive thought.
Keep doing this for 5 minutes, or until you naturally take action. After 5 minutes, take the next action in your list, and do the exercise again. When you have finished your list, just start again from the first undone action of your list. You should find it easier. This will gradually clear your thoughts, and enable you to take action in a more effective way. Taking action is the final cure to stop anxious thoughts. Remember that the main purpose of anxiety is to encourage you to regain control, and nothing will do more than taking action, and learning from it…
Overcoming living the now barriers
You can apply to any negative emotion what we have seen here about worrying. You can understand that mindfulness is a powerful tool to get rid of anxious thoughts, restore positive thoughts, get back in charge, live every moment to the fullest and starting to create your own life.
Developing the practice of living in the present moment can requires a little patience, however is extremely rewarding. The two greater barriers to fully living in the now are overthinking, and stress, and you must address them to develop an effective living in the now practice.
Overthinking will keep you detached from you environment, and will create an invisible barrier between you, and your present time. If you suffer from overthinking, you must learn to overcome it, and use it to your advantage.
Stress will keep you in “survival” mode, and will prevent you from enjoying the present. If stress is an issue in your life, you must address it as part of your path to mindful living.
You can address both these barriers by using purposefully mindfulness on overthinking, and stress. This in itself will be beneficial, and will bring you much closer to living in the present. When you learn how to deal with both these issues, you’ll be able to apply living in the present moment practices much more effectively.
While you develop more confidence on practicing mindfulness, then you’ll be able to develop healthy positive habits that will help you stay on track from now on, and ensure you’ll have these benefits stably in your life……
With mindfulness strategies, you can get rid of anxious thoughts, stop worrying, and take back and live fully your life.
For further info on how mindfulness will improve your life, and an easy quick start with 7 simple strategies you can apply right now, check my free living in the now for creating your best life free pdf report. Just click on the image below and subscribe.
To go even further, check my new “Change Your Mindset to Focus on the Now, and Reduce Stress, and Uncertainty” course
See you next time!