Don’t Always Believe Your Thoughts!
Many students have talked to me in the last couple weeks about feeling overwhelmed by a racing mind that is filled with worries and anxious thoughts. Many of our thoughts are NOT true, so if you go through a phase where you are saying to yourself things like “I’m a loser, I’m never going to pass, Nobody likes me, What’s wrong with me?” – take a breath, slow down and question whether your thoughts are true or whether your mind is playing tricks on you!
Here are some ideas for dealing with worries:
- Get exercise and regular sleep habits. Our worries get seem much bigger when we are not well rested and exercise helps us calm down and get perspective.
- Take a break – go for a walk in the cold, fresh air and concentrate on what you see and hear and feel.
- Talk to someone – often just saying the worries out loud helps you to feel like they are more manageable.
- Talk to yourself like you would to a good friend: “It’s o.k.
You are going to get through this. You have faced difficult challenges before!” Be your own best friend and supportive coach.
- Ask yourself if there is actually evidence that supports these negative thoughts. What is a kinder, more balanced way of seeing the situation.
- Write an alternative thought down and see how that feels.
- Get perspective – in 10 years how serious will these current worries be for you? Ask a friend you trust for their perspective on the issues that are swirling in your mind.
Here is a great link for looking at some of the thinking traps that can spiral us into worrying overload.
Are you a fortune teller who predicts what is going to happen and its all bad?
Do see things in black and white?
Do you exaggerate how bad things are?
Take a look at this list of and see if any of these thinking traps are familiar to you:
and here are some more ways to increase well-being: