Written by Anthony
How To Manage And Dissolve Your Worry And Anxious Thoughts
For years I suffered with constant and persistent repetitive and anxious thoughts, worry and stress nearly each and every day.
From the moment I woke up to the moment I went to bed my head was plagued and full of these annoying anxious and worry thoughts that trigger all the feelings of stress and discomfort in your body.
It was so bad I got stuck in my own head and it spoiled my ability to focus, engage in my surroundings, think clearly, learn and interact socially.
Like everybody else I used to make the disastrous mistake of battling with my thoughts and feelings on a daily basis, but nothing ever got better.
Until one day I learned that if your try and stop, battle, suppress or resist your thoughts and feelings they will always persist, get worse and you will feel beaten and defeated every single time.
Since that discovery, things have got better and better, most days I spend 99% of my day in a state of inner peace, calm and clarity of mind.
These days, if any worry or fearful thoughts of discomfort come into my mind I know how to quickly dissolve them, let them go and pass on by peacefully.
This ten minute read will provide you with very valuable and important information and techniques that are easy to learn and apply to your daily life.
Which can transform your life forever and free you from all your emotional pain, stress, anxiety and suffering for good if you keep on applying these life changing tips.
Joe Barry's -Managing And Ending Anxious Thoughts And General Anxiety
The thoughts that terrify us are not fueled by some unknown force, they are our own responses.
We empower them and equally we dismiss them.
The very act of trying to push these intrusive thoughts away and then understandably getting upset will cause you to resist the thoughts and we all know what we resist persists.
It’s like saying to your mind over and over again “whatever you do‚ do not think of pink elephants‚” and guess what?
You can’t get a single thought in that is not related to pink elephants.
As long as you struggle with the thought‚ your mind like a bold child will keep returning to it.
This is not to say your mind is maliciously working against you. It is better to compare the mind to a radar scanner that picks up on thoughts within us that have high levels of emotional reaction connected to them.
To not react emotionally to intrusive thoughts you need to learn to dis-empower the “fear factor” of the thought; then you must accept and be comfortable with whatever comes to mind.
Don’t hide from or push the anxious thoughts away.
So to take an example:
Say you have fear “X” going on in your mind.
That fear can be virtually anything your mind can conceive. You know the thoughts are not a realistic fear‚ and you want them to stop interrupting your life.
Next time the fearful thought comes to mind‚ do not push it away. This is important.
Tell yourself that that is fine and that the thought can continue to play in your mind if it wishes‚ but you are not going to give it much notice and you are certainly not going to qualify it by reacting with fear.
You know in your heart that the thought is very unlikely to happen.
You have a deeper sense of trust and will not be tossed around emotionally all day by a thought. Say to yourself:
“Well that thought/fear is a possibility‚ but it is very remote and I am not going to worry about that right now.
"Today I am trusting that all is well.”
What is of key important is not to get upset by the thoughts and feelings as they arise. To avoid any fearful emotional reaction to the fear/thought give the fear some cartoon characteristics.
Imagine‚ for example‚ it is Donald Duck telling you that “Something awful is going to happen. Aren’t you scared?”
Give the character a squeaky voice and make it a totally ridiculous scene. How can you take seriously an anxious duck with his big feet?
This use of cartoon imagery reprograms the initial emotional reaction you might have had to the thought and eliminates any authority the thought may have over you. You are reducing the thought’s threat.
When that is done‚ move your attention back to whatever you were doing. Remember‚ you are not trying to push the thought away or drown it out with some outside stimulus.
This takes practice in the beginning‚ but what will happen is that you will find yourself checking how you think/feel less and less during the day‚ and as it does not have a strong fearful emotion connected to it‚ your mind will not be drawn to troublesome intrusive thoughts.
To put in another way‚ the thought becomes unstuck and fades away because the emotional reaction has been neutralized.
In fact‚ that is the first step to moving away from anxious thoughts — neutrality. It is as if your mental energy was spinning in a negative cycle while you were caught in the anxious intrusive thoughts. Now‚ you are learning to stop the negative cycle‚ and move into neutral (see illustration below).
From this new position of neutrality‚ you will experience a much greater sense of clarity away from the confusion of an overanxious mind.
Moving into this mindset of neutrality is your first step. Thoughts generally lead us in one direction or another — a positive cycle (peace/sense of control and order) or a negative cycle (anxiety/ fear/ disorder).
The next step is to adopt a relaxed, peaceful state of mind and move your energy into a positive cycle of thinking.
Neutral thoughts to have in your mind
You might have wondered why it is that some people seem more susceptible to worries and unwanted intrusive thoughts than others.
You now know the answer to that. The difference is that the people who seem carefree are the ones who are not reacting with a strong fearful emotion to an anxious thought.
These people see the same array of thoughts as an anxious person‚ but they do not make a fearful thought a part of their lives.
They dismiss the thought or laugh it off and have a sense of trust that things will work out fine. They see no point in reacting with fear to these thoughts‚ and that ensures the thought has no power or authority over them.
You may feel that you are by nature an anxious person and that you will always react with fear to these thoughts because you have done so for years. That is not the case.
Continuous or obsessive anxious thinking is a behavioral habit‚ and just like any habit it can be unlearned.
I have outlined the quickest and most effective way to do this by using a unique shift in attitude. You can undo years of anxious thinking and reduce your level of general anxiety very quickly.
All it takes is practice.
End Anxious Thoughts In 4 Easy Steps
I can almost imagine what your repetitive anxious thought might be.
Maybe it’s a fear of:
- -a panic attack
- -never being free of general anxiety
- -a bodily sensation that worries you
- -a fear of losing control to your anxiety
My name is Barry McDonagh and I have successfully taught thousands of people in over 30 different countries, how to end general anxiety and panic attacks.
Whatever your particular fear is, I want to share some tips and techniques with you over the coming days that will not only help you end these fears but also reduce your general anxiety level dramatically.
After many years of coaching people to be anxiety free, I have noticed that those who experience panic attacks or general anxiety almost always deal with the frequent occurrence of anxious thoughts.
Anxiety has a sneaky way of seeding doubt regardless of whether the fear is rational or irrational.
So what can be done for people who suffer from repetitive anxious thoughts?
To begin, lets look at how an anxious thought is powered and then I will demonstrate how to quickly eliminate the intensity of the thought.
Say for example you are going about your daily business when an anxious thought enters your mind.
Whatever the nature of the thought, the pattern that follows is usually quite predictable.
The anxious thought flashes briefly in your awareness and as it does so you immediately react with fear as you contemplate the thought.
The fearful reaction you have to the thought then sends a shock-wave through your nervous system. You feel the result of that fear most intensely in your stomach (due to the amount of nerve endings located there).
Because of the intense bodily reaction to the thought you then get sucked into examining the anxious thought over and over.
The continuous fearful reaction you have to the thought, increases the intensity of the experience.
The more you react, the stronger the thought rebounds again in your awareness, creating more anxious shock-waves throughout your body. This is the typical cycle of anxious thoughts.
For some it feels like the anxious thoughts are hijacking their peace of mind.
Because of the reaction you are having, you may continue to spend the rest of your day thinking about the anxious thoughts you experienced.
“Why am I thinking these thoughts?” “Why can’t I shake off this eerie feeling?”
The harder you try not to think about it, the more upset you become. It is like telling someone
‘Whatever happens do not think of a pink elephant’.
Naturally enough it’s all they can think about. That’s the way our brains our wired.
So how can you eliminate these unwanted anxious thoughts?
To begin with:
- -when you start to experience anxious thoughts, it is very important not to force the thoughts away.
Let the thoughts in. The more comfortable you can become with them, the better. These thoughts will never go away fully but what you can learn is to change your reaction to them.
By changing your reaction to the anxious thoughts you become free of them.
Once you establish a new way of reacting to the thoughts it does not matter if you have them or not. Your reaction is what defines the whole experience (and that applies to almost everything).
Everybody experiences fleeting thoughts that many would consider scary or crazy.
The difference between most people and somebody who gets caught up in them, is that the average person sees them for exactly what they are, fleeting anxious thoughts, and casually ignores them.
The anxious person is at a disadvantage as they already have a certain level of anxiety in their system.
The thoughts easily spark feelings of further anxiety which builds into a cycle of fear. You break the cycle by changing how you react to the fearful thought.
Here is an example of how to approach this:
You are enjoying the way your day is going but then all of sudden a fearful thought comes to mind.
Before you would react with anxiety to the idea and then try to force that thought out of your mind.
This time, however, say:
“That’s a fear of X. I could worry and even obsess over that, but this time I’m going to do something different. I’m not going to react to it. I’m also not going to try and stop it either. I’m just going to label the thought and not react.”
Then the thought comes again with more intensity and possibly with new ‘scary’ angles you never considered. When this happens you do exactly the same. As if you were observing a cloud passing overhead, you simply
- -Observe it,
- -Label it (fear of whatever), then
- -Watch it as it passes by with no judgment.
- -Move your attention on to what you were doing.
Observe, Label, Watch, Move on
See the anxious thought for what it really is: -one of the thousands of fleeting sane and insane thoughts every one of us experiences daily.
If you are a more indoors type of person then instead of thinking of the thoughts like clouds passing in the sky, you might try imagining a large cinema screen and the anxious thoughts are projected out onto the screen in front of you. Play around with this approach. Find what works for you.
The key thing to remember is to:
Observe, Label, Watch, Move on
By practicing this approach you gradually stop reacting with fear to the thought and you learn to treat it as nothing more than an odd peculiarity.
When you are at a stage where you are comfortable doing the above exercise and you feel you are making good progress, then try this additional step:
Actually invite one of your more regular fearful thoughts in.
Call the fear to you, say you just want it to come close so you can observe it.
It may seem like the last thing you would wish to bring upon yourself, as you don’t particularly enjoy these thoughts but this approach can be very empowering. You are now calling the shots. You actually invited the issue in.
By doing this you are discharging the dense vibration of fear surrounding the anxious thought. That fear was sustaining itself on your resistance, -the idea that you could not handle these thoughts.
The fear quickly evaporates when you turn around and say “yes of course I can handle these thoughts.”
Fear intensifies when we pull away from it. Anxious thoughts become a mental tug of war if we struggle with them.
It is the mental struggle of pulling against the anxious thoughts that creates the inner psychological tension.
The inner tension is fueled by thoughts like:
- “I can’t handle to think about this -please go away”
- “I don’t like that thought- I want it to stop!”
Take a different stance. Invite anxious thoughts in. Willingly sit with them, label them and do your very best not to react.
Yes, it does take practice but very soon you find yourself in a unique position of control. You are no longer a victim of fearful thinking but a decision maker in what you will or will not be concerned about.
As with every technique there is always a level of practice involved in the beginning. Initially you start observing but then suddenly get anxious about the fearful thought. That’s very normal in the beginning.
Keep at it. Practice and you will quickly see how less impacting those fearful thoughts become.
Do not let your mind trick you into believing that your anxiety is something you will always have to struggle with. That is simply not true.
Not alone is it possible to control the occurrence of anxious thoughts but I can teach you how to end panic attacks and general anxiety if that is your goal.
You can have the life of your dreams. Anxiety does not have the right to steal that hope from you.
I’m going to e-mail you my mini series. It will help reduce anxiety levels significantly.
Some of this information forms a small part of the Panic Away Program.
My full program eliminates panic attacks and general anxiety very quickly and has proved highly successful with both long and short term sufferers of anxiety. The results speak for themselves.
Joe Barry's Excellent Panic Away And GAD Program
If you suffer with persistent high levels of anxiety or you have frequent panic attacks and you feel as if you could do with a bit of help and much welcome relief to help you to end your anxiety and get your life back on track.
Then Joe Barry has created a very popular and successful program called, "PANIC AWAY" to help people end panic attacks, high levels of anxiety and General Anxiety naturally.
In the Panic Away program you will receive:
- A simple technique that will end your panic attacks permanently
- Techniques, CBT and tips to end anxiety
- Exercises to end General Anxiety Disorder
- A chance to join the Panic Away community so you can speak and get tips from other members
You can access Joe's website below and join over 150.000 others who have benefited from the Panic Away program.
Anxiety and the mind, body connection
Relaxing your body and reducing your stress will ease your mind
Your quest to reduce and melt away your anxiety it is important to try and take care of and strengthen you mind and body connection.
If your body is stuck in a state of emotional and physical imbalance of anticipation of danger.
Lets say that; you're standing or sitting in tense or shortened out of aligned postures or you're experiencing high levels of stress and adrenaline.
Because of your mind and body connection and because your muscles and physiology are linked to your survival fight, flight, freeze response.
Your emotional part of your mind.
Will receive and interpret this feedback as something bad is about to happen or there must be a threat in your surrounding environment.
Because, why else would your body be primed and ready in the posture that it would normally be in, if you were facing a threat and you were about too attacked.
Because your senses will not be able to locate the perceived threat, because externally there isn't one.
Your emotional brain will begin to search through your bad or negative memories to try and match up a threat to your stressful and tense emotional state.
Eventually your mind will turn inwards and your anxious thoughts and feelings will become the threat that needs avoiding or defeating.
Because in a real life threatening situation as soon your senses perceived a threat it would trigger of your fight or flight, stressful response as well as causing your muscles to tighten to give you more strength to fight off your attacker or run away.
Once the threat has passed or you were in a safe place and because you would have used up all you extra energy, you would automatically start to relax yourself again.
Your emotional mind would then start to switch off your fight or flight response and you will return back to your natural calm and safe mode.
The trouble with people who suffer with anxiety, because the threat is not real or it only exists in their mind.
There is actually nothing to fight or run away from so they never burn off the excessive energy so they don't return to their natural relaxed state.
Then they get anxious again which causes the build up of even more adrenaline and energy in their body, until they reach a point where their body and mind stays stuck in an anxious and stressful state.
Because of your mind, body and fight or flight connection.
If your body is tense and stressed. This will confuse your mind and your senses will start to frantically scanning your surrounding environment or your emotional memories to try and seek out a threat that does not really exist.
The best way to treat anxiety is to work on changing your feelings and state.
Exercise and relaxation are a great ways to help burn off your excessive energy and stress.
Each time you feel stressed, anxious or tense, or both.
See it as an opportunity for you to consciously make an effort to relax.
Do not fight or try to control your anxiety and feelings.
Immediately focus on relaxing your mind and body.
Take some slow deep breaths, but do not force them.
Make the out breath longer than the in one, and push your stomach all the way out.
Always greet, anxiety and feelings of discomfort with a smile.
Relax your shoulders and release any areas' of tension.
You can distract yourself by humming or singing a happy tune to yourself or you can imagine yourself on a beautiful tropical beach.
Focus on, what you can
It can be hard at first because your mind will try and force you to focus on the uncomfortable feelings, but persevere with it, and things will get easier and better.
The above article will help you deal with your anxious thoughts.
All you then have to do is work on reducing your stress. Releasing your tension and developing your natural poise and balance.
Dealing the what if thoughts
What if, what if never happens?
What if, what if does happen, but it is not as bad as I thought or imagined?
One of the biggest causes of anxiety are those fear provoking what if thoughts and questions?
The thing with anxiety is that it can only exist is the past or the future.
Anxiety, can be associated with a negative past experience or it could be triggered because you are worried about what might happen, or what might go wrong in the future.
The next thing to realize is.
The past and the future doesn't even exist, accept in your mind.
Therefore, the only thing that is really, real to you, is the now.
And, when you're focused in the now, you will be free from anxiety.
The past has gone, and the future is always in the future.
When you get to tomorrow, you are still in the now.
Therefore, the past and the future are just illusions of the mind.
The what if thoughts are always based on your mind looking into the future.
Most of the time, your mind is using your past to gauge your future, often due to a bad emotional traumatic experience.
However, you can create an emotional trauma and negative memory, through your imagination.
The what if thoughts are your mind doing a kind of a risk assessment to help you avoid and potential risks.
Lets say for an example.
You were about to enter a derelict building.
Your mind might come up with those what if thoughts, such as:
What if the roof collapses?
This would help you to avoid, going into the building, because it might hurt you.
Therefore. The what if thoughts, have a purpose.
The trouble, with most what if thoughts are:
Most of them, do not represent, real life threatening dangers.
In fact most of our fears and anxieties, and all the what if thoughts are created internally.
Therefore the danger only exists in the mind.
Yet, the feelings and responses, still feel very real.
Emotions can be messages from the brain, that there is something we need to treat, overcome or our emotional needs are not being met.
The trouble with emotions is the can get out of control.
Learning to control is an important skill that is needed to help us feel calm, happy and balanced helping to promote good health and well-being.
Most people leave their what if thoughts unanswered.
This leads to uncertainty and more similar what if thoughts and imaginings, which triggers more stress, adrenaline and anxiety.
Never leave a what if thought or an imagining, unanswered.
If you know that there is no real physical risk or danger to you
You can reply to the what if thoughts with.
"So what " or "I can handle it"
"What, ever happens, I'll be OK"
You could, tell yourself.
"What if, everything goes well" or "What if, that doesn't happen"
Just focus on, changing the negative what if energy, to a positive outcome and a positive what if energy.
If there is a slight risk to your safety.
You could plan for any pitfalls or risks.
Then take and safety precautions, and then let it go.
You could imagine, things going well.
Acceptance, is often the first step to ending anxiety.
- What is
- What has happened
- What might happen
- Learn to accept the worst case scenario and deal with it or be OK with it.
Then focus on the best case scenario.
Our minds tend to focus on the worst case scenario then they over blow the risks.
To try and combat this, try and focus on what is most likely to happen and imagine things going well, see yourself having fun.
Sometimes to give yourself some much needed relief. You need to accept what ever it is, that is bothering you and be OK with it.
Always accept yourself, including your perceived weaknesses and trust in your ability to handling challenges.
Other things that will make anxiety more severe are stress and tension in the mind and body.
When our body is stressed or our muscles are tense.
Our emotional mind will interpret that something bad is about to happen.
Any time you feel anxious or you're having anxious and scary imaginings, replace them with positive words, phrases and imaginings.
Instead of using words of fear, dislike and dread, anytime you learn that you have to do or face a situation that make you feel uncomfortable, use positive words like:
- I am excited
- I would love to
- I happy to
- I want to
- I choose to
Always end a fearful imagining with a positive phrase or statement.
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