If you’ve ever been sucked down the rabbit hole of worry and anxiety, then you probably know what it feels like to be spiralling out of control with your life. While a little worry can be good for us in some ways, too much worry can lead to panic attacks and anxiety disorders that can be crippling to us.
So why do we worry?
Is it because it’s an inbuilt mechanism to warn us of impending danger, or is it simply something that we’ve become conditioned to do because it’s what everyone else is doing around us? Modern research suggests that it’s actually a combination of both these things.
The challenge arises when you find that worrying is occupying a great deal of your mental and emotional energy. When this happens then anxiety can set in and that’s when we can get into a vicious cycle of worry-anxiety-more worry-more anxiety.
With excessive worrying, our mind/body system goes into hyperdrive. This can lead to loss of appetite, insomnia, harmful addictive behavior, declining health, depression, and relationship problems. While a little worry can help motivate you to take action on things you might normally procrastinate on, excessive worry can be a potentially devastating.
How Do We End The Worry Cycle?
The first thing to be mindful of is that worry comes from the mind. Specifically, fear of things like change, the unknown and the future. The mind can get lost in worrying about what may or may not happen at home, at work, or in any area of our life or the world around you. Regardless of what the mind is obsessed about it’s bound to be future based.
Worry is also about fear of loss. Fear of losing the comfort, health, peace of mind, happiness, security, life, or whatever it is we believe that we may potentially lose. This is valuable information to have because once we understand that the mind can be obsessive about things that it can’t control then it becomes easier to work with it.
Many people tend to handle worry and anxiety by taking prescription medication to reduce the symptoms. However, does that really help with what’s causing or triggering us to be worried? It’s more like a temporary ‘fix’ that has its own set of side effects that can also be unpleasant and harmful.
What then is the answer to dealing with the triggers and causes of our worries and anxieties?
Perhaps it’s the way we look at them. What if we viewed worry and anxiety as something that we can learn from, rather than something we have to get rid of? Wouldn’t that instantly change the way we thought about worry and how we approached it?
The best question to ask yourself when you become aware that you are feeling anxious about something is, ‘is it true?’ By true I mean is it happening right now? If it is, then do something about it. If it isn’t, then what purpose is there in worrying? How is it helping you? Once you answer that question, then if you want to you can choose to let go of being worried.
How do you do that though if the mind won’t let you – that’s the million dollar question. This is where you come to the conclusion about whose really in control of your life. If you can’t choose to let go of something that’s not a real or present danger in this moment, then that tells you that the subconscious mind is in charge.
This is actually great news. It gives you a way to immediately start taking back your power to choose how you want your life to look, feel and be. As long as you are a prisoner to fearful thoughts and feelings about the future then you’ll always feel like a victim and believe that you are powerless to do anything about it.
That’s simply not true. You always have the power to choose exactly the way you want your life to look and feel without exception. All you need to do is focus your attention on the present. In other words, get out of your head and drop into your body so that you feel centered and grounded again. As soon as you do that all thoughts of worry will disappear.
Happiness Is The Key
Happiness is a natural state of being. When we are at ease with ourselves and have peace of mind, then we are naturally happy. Nothing else is needed. It’s only when we are in an unnatural state such as worry or anxiety, that we forget that happiness is waiting just underneath the surface of the disturbance in the mind and body.
The more time you spend focusing on bringing the mind into the present moment, the more time you will have to enjoy being happy. The way you can do this is simply to be mindful of your thoughts and feelings without judging them.
Just by taking the time to close your eyes and allow any worrying thoughts or feelings to move through the mind and body without judging them or getting caught up in them, will rapidly start to reduce the impact they could potentially have over your mental, emotional state, or physical state of being.
This simple exercise in mindfulness is all that’s required to create space in your head. Once you have a bit of space in your head, then the mind starts to quiet down and a calmness and inner peace arises. That’s all that’s needed to instantly start to retrain the mind to let go of worrying thoughts and feelings and be happy.
So the next time you find yourself worrying about something that’s not actually happening, then give yourself a few mindful moments to stop worrying so that you can be happy again.
If you enjoyed this post please comment and share if you want more content like this
Michael Atma Blog