Anxiety 101: What? Why? How to stop it?!?!? Don’t worry! We’ve got you covered :-)
What is Anxiety? —>A feeling of nervousness, fear, and dread.
Why does this happen? —>Back in the day, we were Hunters and Gatherers and we needed to feel anxious to be able to prepare and protect ourselves against real danger like a bear or lion in the wild coming to attack us. Our brains are wired to respond in this way. We needed to fear the possibility so that we could respond accordingly in order to survive.
However, now, we are fairly sheltered and the things that we tend to feel anxious about is a negative thought that rarely includes any real-life danger. Unfortunately, our minds still carry out in the same way as when we were Hunters and Gatherers. We get into this 'False Thinking Trap.’
THE FALSE THINKING TRAP =
Thoughts that stimulate emotion, stimulate a chemical release in the body.
We then hallucinate a future, make it real, and then get afraid in the present. (This does not serve us).
WHAT TO DO:
Tell yourself verbally, “I’ll handle it when it happens”. Create a vision for yourself of what it is that you want to happen instead of focusing on what you are afraid can possibly happen.
Additionally, pause for a moment and ask yourself the following questions....
“What am I thinking right now?”
“What is making me feel anxious?”
“What am I worried will happen?”
“What bad things do I expect to happen?”
You can challenge your assumptions by asking yourself…
“Are my thoughts rational or irrational?”
“Are my judgments based on facts or opinions?”
“Am I 100% sure that the worst will happen?”
“If the worst happened could I survive?”
We all find ourselves coping with troubling thoughts from time to time — especially when we're going through changes in our lives that may provoke anxiety or stress. When we are anxious, we can get trapped in false or negative ways of thinking. Realistic thinking is a way to keep your mind thinking in a realistic way in the present moment instead of worse case scenarios. Realistic thinking means looking at the entire situation—the positive, the negative, and the neutral parts—and then coming to a conclusion that is more balanced and realistic.
Our thoughts have a big impact on how we feel, therefore, it is important to pay attention to what assumptions we create. Maintaining our thoughts as positive and in the present will allow us to fulfill our greatest potential.