Worry and Anxiety: Self Help Tips to Stop Worrying and Reduce Anxiety

Worrying about something can only seem helpful when it compels you to take some action or solve a particular problem. When you are preoccupied with certain conditions and scenarios that are difficult to handle, when certain fears and doubts are relentless, it can paralyze your mind. These can suck in all the emotional energy and elevate your level of anxiety as well. Apart from this, it can also interfere with your daily chores, making it difficult to handle. At such times, training your mind to focus on things that will bring some positivity into your life will help.

Impact of Worry and Anxiety on your Mind

When you worry constantly it can bring stress into your life. It can keep you awake at night and make you feel tensed as well as edgy throughout the day. The wrecking nerves can be equally disturbing which may also disturb your mind completely. Why does it seem so difficult to stop worrying about certain things?

Impact of Worry and Anxiety on your Mind

You can increase your anxiety level by keeping negative beliefs or worrying about all the things that cause you more worries. This can be equally damaging and can affect the way you perform as well. It becomes difficult to break the worrisome habit and believe that this does no good to you. The first thing that has to be done to break the bubble is to stop believing that worrying is positive or good or beneficial. Once you understand that it cannot cause anything good and you will able to gain control over the worried mind.

Self Help Tip #1: Creating a “Worry Time” is a Good Way to Deal with your Worries and Anxiety:

By creating a specific “Worry Time” you will be able to stop worrying and reduce anxiety during the remaining part of the day. It can become difficult to be productive in your everyday life when your worry and anxiety are clouding your thoughts. What can be done? If you are like all the other chronic worriers, your thoughts may not seem to be in control. You must have tried a lot of things that include distracting yourself, positive thinking, reasoning your worries, but nothing may seem to work at all.

Telling yourself to stop worrying about things will not work. You can keep distracting yourself or sleep on your anxious thoughts for a brief period, but you cannot eliminate them completely. In fact, try to do something that will help bring some positivity in your head. When you keep on doing these things, the feelings can become strong and persistent.

Determine to Put Off Worrying to a Later Time:

  1. Create a special time zone for worrying. By making a specific worry time, you will have the liberty to think about all the thoughts that are troubling your mind. This can be done by choosing a specific place or time for worries. When you do so, you can plan to be free of worries for an entire day.
  2. Delay your worry. If your brain gets hit by a worrisome thought at a time, you can always postpone it to your worry time. This can be done by writing or noting down the worry on a piece of paper and reminding yourself that it has to be pushed to the dedicated time for it. Save it for later and you can begin doing your routine chores.
  3. Go through your list of worries during that period. During that time, think about all the thoughts that were troubling your mind throughout the day. If you think that this worry does not seem to be of importance, eliminate it and you can enjoy the rest of the day without any hassles.

Delaying worries can prove to be effective because it puts a pause to your habit of living with worries at all times. Moreover, you will not have to struggle with suppressing the thoughts or judging it. You can just postpone it for later. As you will develop or work on this habit of pushing your anxious thoughts, you will gain control over your mind as well as your thought process.

Self Help Tip #2: Best Way to Stop Worrying and Reduce Anxiety is to See If the Problem is Solvable or Not

Ask yourself whether the problem is solvable? And by doing this you will be able to control worrying and reduce anxiety. You can temporarily feel anxious, if you are struck with worrisome thoughts. When your head is occupied with the thoughts, it can keep you away from the emotions and make you feel weird as well. Additionally, worrying about a thing and solving the issues are two different things that can cause serious troubles.

When you evaluate a specific situation or come up with a solution to handle it well and making plans for it, it can be termed as problem solving. On the other hand, worrying does not bring you to the stage where there are solutions available. Whenever your mind is struck with worry, be sure to think if you can actually solve the problem. The following can be of great help:

  • Is the worrisome thought related to something that you are facing or just imaginary?
  • If it is imaginary, how is it going to happen? Is your concern about it a practical choice?
  • Can you work to solve the problem or be prepared to handle it or control it?

Solvable and productive worries are those in which you can take certain actions at an instance. Unsolvable and unproductive worries are those in which there is no action involved.

You can begin brainstorming, if you are able to solve the worries. Make a list of all the solutions that can help you in solving such worries and find the solution that suits it in the best way. Once you have the right option and start working on the plan, you can get relief from such worrisome thoughts.

Self Help Tip #3: “Acceptance” Helps you Deal with Worries and Anxiety more Effectively

By accepting doubt, suspicion and uncertainty you will be able to stop worrying and reduce your anxiety. Anxiety and worry can be increased when a person is unable to tolerate his or her uncertainty. Unpredictability and doubt can cause chronic worries. Worrying is a way to see what the future unfolds and this can be termed as an attempt to control unpleasant events as well as outcomes. The major issue is, these tricks never seem to work. When you are willing to stop worrying, you should learn to tackle the need for immediate answers and certainty.

Self Help Tip #4. Challenging your Anxious Thoughts can Help you Control your Worries and Anxiety

Consciously confront your anxious thoughts and you will be able stop worrying and reduce anxiety. If you suffer from chronic worries and anxiety, chances are that you may look at the world with a different perspective. You may at times overestimate about certain things and think that it may turn out to be bad at all. You may also question your ability to handle all the issues in life, with an assumption that you may fall apart with just a simple problem. These pessimistic and irrational attitudes are known as cognitive distortions.

Although these distortions are not based on the reality, one cannot easily give up on them. They are a part of a thought process that follows a similar pattern and you are not aware when they take place. In order to break the pattern, you will have to stop thinking about them and retrain the brain as well.

Begin by understanding about such thoughts and detail about all the possibilities that can scare or cause worries in your mind. Instead of seeing these thoughts as mere facts, you can look at them like hypotheses that you are trying to test. You will be able to develop a perspective towards life, when you learn to challenge and examine the fears as well as worries.

Confront your Worrying Thoughts:

  • What is the proof of these thoughts being true or not true?
  • Is there any other way to look at the situation in a positive manner?
  • What is the possibility of these things that I am worried about will take place in real?
  • If there is very little possibility, what are the possible outcomes?
  • Is this thought process doing any good to me? How will it affect me?
  • What would I do if my friend was worried about the same thing?

Self Help Tip #5. Begin to Write a Journal to Stop those Worries and Anxiety:

Be attentive of how others affect you and by doing this you will be able to stop worrying and reduce anxiety. A man always thinks in a way to which company he belongs. You will also be affected by the type of company you keep. There are studies which suggest that certain emotions are contagious. We can quickly catch the moods of other people and even from strangers who share a common space with us. The people you spend time with are the ones that have an impact on your mental health or your sound mindedness.

  • Maintain a diary for your worries. You may not be aware of the impact that a person or situation lays on you. It might be the way in which you are dealing with your family or the ways by which you have been handling stress from so long. When you begin worrying, be sure to write it down and what caused it. Later, you will be able to understand the pattern.
  • Choose to spend less time with people who bring anxiety in you. Are there people in your company who always make you feel stressed by bringing some point or the other? If so, think about cutting short on the time you spend with them. When you establish boundaries, the relationship will be healthier and you will be able to manage stress in a better way.
  • Choose your best friend carefully. When you have a confidant to whom you speak about your issues, know what to talk about. While there are some who can make you feel better, there are others who may let you feed on your fears, worries and doubts.

Self Help Tip #6. Practicing Mindfulness Helps Control your Worries and Anxiety

Make a habit of practicing mindfulness and you can quickly be able to stop worrying and cut down your anxiety. Worrying is usually associated with the thoughts that are going to happen in the future. By practicing techniques of mindfulness, you will be able to bring your focus on the present situations. This can help in breaking your worrisome as well as anxious thoughts. By postponing them, you will learn to control them and eventually you will learn to let them go as well. By creating various techniques and controlling your mind, you can help in tackling such situations and be in touch with your emotions too.

  • Recognize and observe the feelings and thoughts that make you feel anxious. Never try to ignore or fight them back or try to control them like you used to do before. Instead, observe their pattern from the view of an outsider and tend to stay without making any judgments or reacting to it.
  • Let go of your worries. Always know that when you do not try to control the thoughts that make you feel anxious, they eventually pass. They only make you feel worried when you are engaged in it.
  • Focus on present situations. Pay close attention to the way you feel about yourself. Follow your breath and see the changes that your emotions are undergoing. If you feel that you are stuck with some thoughts, be sure to bring your attention back to the present times.
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:April 3, 2019

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