COUNSELLING BLOG

Posts tagged worry

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Errors in Thinking that Create Anxiety

1. All-or-nothing thinking: Looking at things in black-or-white categories, with no middle ground (“If I fall short of perfection, I’m a total failure.”)

2. Overgeneralization: Generalizing from a single negative experience, expecting it to hold true forever (“I didn’t get hired for the job. I’ll never get any job.”)

3. The mental filter: Focusing on the negatives while filtering out all the positives. Noticing the one thing that went wrong, rather than all the things that went right.

4. Diminishing the positive: Coming up with reasons why positive events don’t count (“I did well on the presentation, but that was just dumb luck.”)

5. Jumping to conclusions: Making negative interpretations without actual evidence. You act like a mind reader (“I can tell she secretly hates me.”) or a fortune teller (“I just know something terrible is going to happen.”)

6. Catastrophizing: Expecting the worst-case scenario to happen (“The pilot said we’re in for some turbulence. The plane’s going to crash!”)

7. Emotional reasoning: Believing that the way you feel reflects reality (“I feel frightened right now. That must mean I’m in real physical danger.”)

8. ‘Shoulds’ and ‘should-nots’: Holding yourself to a strict list of what you should and shouldn’t do and beating yourself up if you break any of the rule

9. Labeling: Labeling yourself based on mistakes and perceived shortcomings (“I’m a failure; an idiot; a loser.”)

10. Personalization: Assuming responsibility for things that are outside your control (“It’s my fault my son got in an accident. I should have warned him to drive carefully in the rain.”)

Source: http://www.helpguide.org/mental/anxiety_self_help.htm

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Tips for Overcoming Fear and Anxiety

1. Start small, and take the first step. You are on a journey. This is just the beginning. You only have to start.
2. Have faith in yourself. At least you’re brave enough “to try”. If you’re patient and keep trying you will get there in the end.
3. Make a list of all your fears so they’re not formless and vague. It is easier to fight them if you know what you are fighting!
4. Accept that life is often hard, and fear is natural and normal. Every person who succeeds will have to face and deal with fear.
5. Remind yourself of your successes and the ways in which you’ve changed. You have triumphed and succeeded over obstacles before.
6. Remind yourself of those who love you and believe in you. They know that you can do it – so derive some strength from them.
7. Imagine how you’ll look and how you’ll feel when you’ve succeed. It is WORTH making the effort. Don’t give up: you’ll reach your goal!

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How to have a more peaceful life

1. Recognise how much your thoughts affect your feelings – and work on changing your self-destructive thinking.
2. Stop trying to be someone you’re not meant to be.
3. Stop trying hard to please other people all the time.
4. Expect to meet hurdles and to experience disappointments.
5. Enjoy experimenting with your creativity.
6. See life as an adventure, full of possibilities.
7. Be grateful for the small things that brighten up your day.

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The 8 Most Common Fears

1. Fear of flying: Even though statistics show it is the safest way to travel, flying still appears to be the number one fear.

2. Fear of public speaking: This is due to the fact that all eyes are on you – and if you make a mistake then there’s no escape!

3. Fear of heights: Perhaps it’s more appropriate to say “the fear of landing” – and the possible damage this could do to you!

4. Fear of the dark: This fear is almost universal in all younger kids, and it’s one that can persist well into adulthood. It’s partly due to the fact that we can’t tell what is there - so we feel vulnerable as can’t protect ourselves.

5. Fear of intimacy: This is closely aligned with the fear of rejection, abandonment, commitment, and of being controlled.

6. Fear of death: This is partly related to the fear of the unknown, but also to the thought of non-existence, too.

7. Fear of failure: Almost everybody fears being scorned and written off – or of missing the mark, and being judged inadequate.

8. Fear of rejection: We all want to feel loved, and to know that we belong – so we fear being rejected and the message that this sends.

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How our wrong beliefs can stress us out

Often the thoughts we carry round in our head – and our basic beliefs about the way things should be – are actually a source of unnecessary stress. So, check out the beliefs that we have listed below and see if there’s something that applies to you:

1. Demand for Approval: This is the belief that others must always treat us well. We must have love or approval all the time, from every single person who matters to us, or else we feel we’re worthless and unloveable.
2. High Self Expectations: This is the belief that we must always succeed, and even excel, in everything we do – or it means that we’re a failure and we don’t have any value.
3. Dependency: This is the belief that we can’t cope on our own. We need to lean on others to help us all the time – and we can’t be independent and just make our own decisions.
4. Helplessness: This is the belief that the events in our past have determined our future and the goals that we can set. That is, we think we’re helpless victims – and that’s why we have these problems.
5. Emotional Control: This where we give control to other people, and say that they’re the ones who make us feel the way we do. If only they were different then we wouldn’t feel this way.
6. Personal Idealism: This is the belief that other people and the world must always be predictable, and fair and just.
7. Problem Avoidance: This is the belief that problems make life hard and should be avoided wherever possible. We don’t believe they central for developing new skills, resilience, perseverance and character.
8. We Must Be Free From Anxiety At All Times (Discomfort Anxiety): This is the belief that we can’t cope with feeling anxious, nervous, worried or uncomfortable. Instead, life should be stress free so I don’t have to have these feelings.
9. Perfectionism: This is the belief that there’s a perfect answer, or that there’s only one solution, to the problems I am facing. Hence, I’m frightened to act in case I make a mistake.
10. Over Caring: This is the belief that I must become upset and show that I care when others are upset – or it means that I am heartless and I lack compassion.

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How to Stop Worrying

1. Remind yourself that worrying doesn’t stop things happening. Things will happen – or not happen –anyway.

2. Recognise that “What ifs” don’t usually help with problem solving. It’s better to use logic, and brain storm for solutions. Take control of your emotions by using rational thinking.

3. Motivate yourself by something other than worrying. Take a break and do something fun, and then go back to your work again. That positive approach will reap more benefits.  

4. Face your fears – and do the things that you worry about. The thought is often much worse than the actual thing you fear.

5. Ask yourself “What’s the worst thing that could happen?” Then, “What are the chances that it will happen? Then “Will you survive it, if it happens, in the end?” Usually, that helps to move us from an extreme and irrational way of thinking to a more realistic, and reasonable way if thinking.

6. Teach yourself a range of relaxation strategies – and then concentrate on them instead of on your different fears. Or, adopt a mindful approach – and keep your focus on “right now”.

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How to Stop Worrying

1. Prepare for the worst but hope for the best. In reality, few of our worries actually become a reality. However, if you prepare in advance for things going wrong, you’ll have strategies available to cope and survive.

2.  Write a list of everything you think you need to do, and then tick them off as you work through the list. That will help you feel more organised, and much more in control.

3. Do something to distract yourself – so your anxious thoughts don’t grow bigger in your mind.

4. Share your feelings with someone who understands and cares. They’ll offer you support – and you’ll gain perspective, too.

5. Confront the problem head often. It’s often the uncertainty that worries us the most – so face up to your worries – and take the steps you can.

6. Choose to do something that help you to calm you – like listening to your ipod or chilling with a friend.

7. Choose to be thankful. There are so many things to be grateful for. Compose a list of those, and you’ll find your worries fade. 

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