ANXIETY TIPS - Challenge negative thoughts
Anxiety can be calmed down by challenging negative thinking. It can be a helpful strategy to get the thoughts in perspective. To realise that a thought is just that .... a THOUGHT .... it doesn't have to be acted on..... it can come and go. A more healthy perspective removes the negative thought's power.... it no longer can dominate your outlook, and you're more likely to feel in control.
So if you’re struggling to control negative thoughts you could try these strategies:
1) Pause and take a breath.
This could stop negativity feelings from escalating. Calming down our nervous system can help to dissipate feelings of worry and panic. You can try 5 finger breathing, 7-11 breathing or bubble breathing.
2) Is the thought is factual?
Often they're not! Taking a step back can often give us the space to notice there isn’t any evidence to back up the negative thought.
3) Analyse whether the thought is actually YOUR belief ..... or someone else’s?
We take other people’s opinions to heart sometimes, but really, the only opinion that matters is our own.
4) Would those who know & love you agree with this negative thought?
I’m guessing no. Talk to yourself kindly, as you would to a friend.
5) Can you reframe the negative thought more positively?
For example, this is not a failure but an opportunity to try again differently. You have learnt from your mistake and you can make "better mistakes" tomorrow. This growth mindset can really help to shift the expectation that things must go perfectly the first time, because they rarely do and this strategy can help you to cope effectively.
6) Can you focus on a time this DID go well?
Don’t let negative thoughts knock your confidence, instead pat yourself mentally on the back when it did go ok ...... and try again with renewed strength.
Repetition is the key to success .... the more you repeat, the more familiar you become. The same is true for any new habit or skill, whether that's a new language, dance routine or musical instrument. Our brains love repetition and familiarity, so slowly but surely you can re-wire your brain away from an automatic negative bias - to a more happy and positive outlook.
Good luck and let me know how you get on!
If you'd like some hypnotherapy sessions to help with anxiety, depression, confidence, phobias, OCD, stopping smoking, increasing performance, IBS, pain management, PTSD, calm labour & childbirth, addiction, eating disorder or weight management .... do drop me a message or give me call. I offer a free initial consultation.
Katharine: 07966 243876 / firstname.lastname@example.org