7 great ways to manage anxiety related thoughts

7 great ways to manage anxiety related thoughts

Helpful to manage anxiety and distress; and helpful, therefore, to allow space for more positive emotions such as happiness…

I don’t actually believe in “thought stopping” as the heading of this article suggests. The research clearly suggests that trying to “stop” unpleasant thoughts just exacerbates them. But I do believe the strategies listed in this article can, nevertheless, be helpful.

via the Ladders by Melissa Stanger

Anxiety is one of the most common issues I hear about from my clients, one that many people have on a regular, sometimes daily, basis. Of course, anxiety is a normal part of the human experience, and it can be a healthy, biological reaction to environmental stressors.

The problem is when that reaction switches from one of manageable, temporary worry or stress to heightened, intolerable panic. The latter can interfere with work, social activities, and personal relationships. Sometimes anxiety can make it incredibly difficult to function as we normally do, and this is a very scary and uncomfortable feeling.

One of the most effective ways to curb anxiety in the moment is thought-stopping — a strategy that interrupts catastrophic thinking to allow our minds a few moments of clarity to think through the anxiety. Here are seven ways to do it:

1. Scattered counting

Counting up (or down) to 10 is a great way to handle anger, but it’s not as effective for anxiety because the process is so automatic. While we’re counting chronologically, our minds still have the capacity to ruminate on whatever is causing our anxiety. A better technique is scattered counting. Start with any number and then jump around — 14, 89, 30, 57, etc. It takes more concentration to come up with the next number when you have to think about what it will be, and this helps take your mind off the thoughts that are troubling you.

2. Verbal interruption

The traditional way to stop thoughts in their tracks is with a verbal interruption. This could be literally spoken out loud, if you feel comfortable doing so, or spoken to yourself in your head. Shouting “stop!” or “enough!” or “not now!” when your worries begin to take over, forces you to take a pause. This can be done as many times as you need to calm your mind…

…keep reading the full & original article HERE