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Pradeep was a loving husband, but he always felt anxious that his marriage wouldn't last too long. He dreamt of losing his job, a bad divorce case, children separating from him and him living alone. He would sweat, have sleepless nights and often get up breathless from his nightmares. He made sure that he dropped his wife to work everyday and in office he would do anything to please his seniors. As a result he would be tired, didn't get time to relax and became a pain for his wife. This made him more anxious as his boss would often load him with work and his wife fought with him for family time.
But the divorce never happened because he had a good relationship with not only his wife but even with his in laws and on top of that he had a flourishing career. If Pradeep had only recognised that his in laws loved him for his soft and gentle nature and his wife loved him for his caring and supportive attitude, and that his company had recently given him a promotion out of turn, he wouldn't have needed to fret so much about a broken marriage. And he needn't have experienced domestic strife and his boss's wrath.
Anxious people often misdiagnose the risk in a situation and feel a constant threat to themselves and their wellbeing, which often lands them in more trouble as they try to avoid feeling anxious at all costs by avoiding situations and behaving in a manner which creates more anxiety.
Do you tend to believe and think in similar ways and act which makes you further anxious? Check below for dysfunctional beliefs and thoughts and a more mature way of modifying your thoughts which can help you do a realistic risk assessment and efficient behaviours leading to peace and freedom.
1. I KNOW WHATS GOING TO HAPPEN:
Most anxious people deny holding this belief However many people spend their entire lives worrying about future predictions they have made which never come true. They have wrongly predicted the future with such conviction that they ruin any chance they may have had of finding peace of mind. Think about the things that have worried you over the years. The things you got most worked up about? How many of them actually came true no matter how convinced you were that they would? Anxiety is almost always based upon unconscious fortune telling.
A more helpful belief may be:
I can make an educated guess - a projection about what is likely to happen and then make plans to avoid catastrophe. Then I can stop worrying about it.
2. IF I THINK THEN IT HAS TO BE TRUE:
Once again most people deny holding this belief. On a conscious, rational level they know that thoughts are only thoughts. Unconsciously however anxious people become so convinced of the ‘truth' of their thoughts that they stop being able to rationalize at all.A more helpful belief may be:
I can measure my thoughts objectively against the evidence and decide whether to accept or reject them. I don't have to believe everything I consider.
3. IT IS UNBEARABLE WHEN THINGS GO WRONG
This is called catastrophic thinking and it's one of the fastest ways there is to destroy your peace of mind. After all, let's face it, things go wrong on a very regular basis. If you hold this belief then of course you're going to worry. You may be very objective in your assessment of the situation - the fact that things do often go wrong - but the way you interpret that likelihood will give rise to anxiety. It's important to get things into perspective.
A more helpful belief may be:
Things often don't turn out the way I'd like them to. However it's the little adversities in life that help me grow. Problems can be used to make me better - not bitter. I'm a resourceful human being with the ability to deal with most things so long as I think clearly about the problem and keep my anxious thoughts under control.
4. I MUST AVOID STRESS AT ALL COSTS:
Most people are surprised to learn that avoiding stress is one of the worst things we can do. Anxiety management is a skill and it takes practice. If we avoid stress we miss out on the practice and so we never learn to deal with it. What's worse, we actually lose the coping skills we already have and so, over time we become more and more anxious.
A more helpful belief may be:
Life is full of stress but this can be overcome by thinking about it logically and taking positive action to change things for the better.
5. I HAVE TO BE IN CONTROL TO BE SAFE:
This belief is not only wrong it's dangerous. Total control is impossible for anyone to achieve. There are always too many possibilities, too many things which may go wrong. If your peace of mind depends upon control you'll never stop worrying.
A more helpful belief may be:
I can control my own actions and responses to the world. That's as much as anyone can ever do. It's enough because if I can control myself (and my thoughts) I can survive and actually grow from just about anything.
6. I CAN THINGS THAT CAN'T BE CHANGED:
Unless you're superhuman you can't. Remember that anxiety is part of our natural defence mechanism. It's a call to action. It alerts us to the fact that something is wrong and gives us the opportunity to change it. It has no place in situations which cannot be changed. Nevertheless how many of us worry about things which happened in the past for example - things which can never be changed. If you worry about past events instead of planning to overcome future problems you're not only wasting your time you're destroying your quality of life and, on one level at least, asking the impossible of yourself - to change what cannot be changed.
A more helpful belief may be:
There are some things which I cannot change. It's better to concentrate upon what I can achieve instead of worrying pointlessly about the things I cannot. To put it another way:
God grant me the serenity to accept the things which cannot be changed; The courage to change the things which can be changed and the wisdom to know the difference.
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I am so much depressed due to my bf. He left me for 2 years due to family reasons. I was gone through bad depression, weight loss, insomnia, now again he felt sry and we are in relationship where he doesn't understand me. He doesn't let me feel happy. I want to leave him but I can't. Everytime this ends up with thought of suicide. I hate my life. I am student of bds 1st year. I am not able to answer in viva though I know answer.
I'm married. I have to go out of my place for a month. Is there any solution to keep myself without sex, as I can't stay single day without sex with my wife. Plus reply.
I do not chew my food enough. I always forget to do it. What to do? What happens if food is not chewed enough?
I am suffering from epilepsy and get attacks minimum twice a month. I am not getting a good result from the medicine prescribed to me currently. What can I do to get cured?
My memory power is decreasing day by day. L am forgetting day to day things. What should I eat and do to increase my memory power?
One of my family member is addicted with smoking and is unable to relax. How can he quit smoking and what will he do?
Doctors my lover's parent separated our relationship. After that. I was so frustrated. I felt like dying. Inorder to overcome that feeling and for forgetting her I started smoking weed. It was pretty much effective then. Aftr a long time everything abt the relnshp changed. But I still have the habit of smoking weed. I tried to control my mind by not taking the weed. But when my friends call me for smoking weed, that control wasn't strong enough. Please give me some suggestions to get rid of this habit. [Note;; I'm a hosteller. Availability of weed at hostel is plenty.]
Hi I am 27 year old male. I have been smoking for past 8 years now. I Desperately want to quit. Please suggest how I can quit smoking.
My uncle is having some suspicious behavior and very short tempered. He is greedy and not at all honest. He was having some extra marital affair and beaten my aunt few times. He is living in same house with my aunt but in separate room. He always lock his room when away. Even long years back he manipulated and had sex with one of my cousin when she was minor. Now whenever we speak with my aunt she is never happy with her life. She is a working lady. Is my uncle is curable? Is my aunt can have any counselling to be happy?
I am suffering from chronic depression from my child hood. Is there any cure for this? Medicines having side affects like impotency, gastric problem.
She has body pain in both hands n legs along with tiredness on continues basis. Her age 33 years and weight 54 KGS. Facing problems from last 3 months. Iron, hemoglobin and several test conducted. Result are fine. Kindly advice.
Hi I'm under going depression I'm suffering from pcod and have gained more weight. Kindly help me to become normal Thank you.
One of the major pitfalls of modern professional as well as personal life is stress. With obesity and bad diet, stress completes the unholy trinity of the three pronged problems which contributes to many modern lifestyle related disorders. Even if you control obesity and diet through lifestyle changes, stress is inherent in our everyday life and mostly is not in your control.
However, Ayurveda has some great methods through, which you can limit or minimize stress and limits its effect on your mind, body and soul.
Ayurveda - The holistic approach to stress
Ayurveda has been around for thousands of years and is thus, a great tool to fight or reduce many of the physical and mental ailments that afflict you. Ayurveda’s approach at busting stress is thus, very well rounded. These methods help keep your mind still to reduce stress and also reduce the ill effects of stress on your body. Some of the elements of this holistic diet are mentioned below:
- Change your diet: Stress creates craving for unhealthy food, which is either very spicy or has a lot of processed sugar or fat. It is a temporary fix, which is again required when the next bout of stress hits, resulting in a pattern akin to addiction. One of the first steps is to break the cycle by changing eating habits. Stress occurs as a reaction to adversities in the world and rather than food aggravating the vata, pitta and kapha doshas, it should pacify and balance them. Whole and healthy food is what you need in such a case and it can comprise of
- Root vegetables
- Simple foods such as rice or roti
- Green vegetables among others
Drink herbs in form of beverages to reduce stress: There are many forms of Ayurvedic herbs, which can help combat stress. One natural response among many people when stressed is to consume coffee or tea in large quantities, which may actually aggravate the problem. Try drinking Ayurvedic herbs as tea, which have been specially formulated to combat stress and correct the unbalanced doshas within the body.
Try Aromatherapy: Incense sticks and other specially formulated aroma candles can be used to create a relaxing atmosphere in your home where you can sit and meditate while the pleasant aromas and the herbs within them can lower your stress level and act as a release point.
Abhyanga: This is a form of self-massage with the help of specially medicated herbal Ayurvedic oils. It helps the body by relaxing the muscles, lubricating connective tissues and also improving circulation. Abhyanga reduces stress within the body and keeps you calm and relaxed. This will help you to reduce stress and also handle it better on a daily basis.
Pranayama, yoga and exercise: One of the most effective tools to combat stress and improve your physiological condition is through yoga and pranayama. Pranayama in particular is one of the most effective methods to regulate multiple functions of the body and to ensure your mind stays still and calm. Certain yoga poses can also be emphasized on to ensure better stress relief. Also ensure that you diligently follow your exercise routine daily as it is proven to be one of the most effective ways of combatting stress.
Herbs: Certain herbs can be used as medications, which can restore the balance of doshas. Sometimes, stress is caused due to internal problems rather than incitement from the outside world. Some of the herbs that can be used in medicated combinations in such cases are triphala, ashwagandha and brahmi. However, it is best to consult with an Ayurvedic practitioner who can prescribe tailor made medications for you.