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Ms. Samiksha Jain 89% (630 ratings)
Hypnotherapist, DCS, BSIC, Advanced Trainee of Transactional Analysis, Advanced Skills in Counselling
Psychologist,  •  9 years experience
FEELING ANXIOUS? MODIFY YOUR THOUGHTS AND FIND PEACE AND FREEDOM
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.

If you have questions, please click on "consult"
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