Wondering what to do when you worry too much? Here a couple of proven methods and strategies to help you overcome worrying.
Be Present, Be Mindful
Be here, in the present. Be aware of your immediate surroundings. Listen to the sounds around you right now, see the colors and shapes of your environment, take a deep breathe and smell something you didn’t notice before, feel the texture of a wall in the room you’re currently in. Just dedicate a few moments of awareness to being present.
Because when you are truly present, you can’t worry.
Worry is something that is about the future. You worry about something that might happen, something that might affect you. That’s all future, and nobody knows the future.
This isn’t a “cure for worrying”, but it’s a simple trick you can use to sometimes get out of a worry-state.
People who worry often tend to imagine things going totally wrong. When they imagine something, they almost compulsively imagine the worst case, and then indulge in that imagination.
Every piece of information they get, they process by thinking: what’s the worst thing this could mean to me?
So when somebody asks: “How come it smells funny here?”, they might assume that someone might think they are the one smelling funny, and how that will negatively impact their social standing and career, and they will die alone and poor.
Seems exaggerated? Yep. But you’d be surprised how many chronic worriers think along lines like these.
Write Your Worries Off
Trying to suppress your worries doesn’t work. In fact, it can worsen your worries, because you’ll need to constantly try to use force against your worrying thoughts.
So what you can do instead is to take all the worries in your head, and write them down on paper.
This is based on what psychologists call expressive writing, and it can help you to get rid of thoughts than come haunting you repeatedly.
The important thing when you ask a question like: What to do when you worry too much? Is that you actually do the things and give them a try, rather than just reading about them.
Plus, when you write down all the worries that circle around in your head, you’ll actually get a clear picture of what you’re dealing with. Whereas, if you just keep them in your head, what often happens is that they move around like a carroussel and can seem more overwhelming than it really is, because your mind can jump for hours and hours from one worry to the next, repeating the same kind of worry again and again. But when you write it all down, chances are that after a couple of pages, you’ll discover: ‘uhm, I don’t know what else I can write about. It’s all on paper here.’ You can even start an almost comical attempt to come up with more worries and struggle to worry about more things.
Hypnotize Your Worries Away
Hypnosis can be incredibly effective when it comes to diminishing worries. And this is not just a random claim – researchers from the prestigous Yale University proved this. They found that hypnosis helped patients to reduce presurgery anxiety by 68%.