Anxiety is rewarding

Each time we worry and nothing bad happens, our mind connects worry with preventing harm:

Worry → nothing bad happens.

And the takeaway is, "It's a good thing I worried." 

@jaybarr

🌻

Self Improvement

MORE IDEAS FROM THE ARTICLE

  • If I worry, I'll never have a bad surprise.
  • It's safer if I worry. We believe that the act of worrying itself somehow lowers the likelihood of a dreaded outcome. 
  • I show I care by worrying. We need to distinguish between caring about a situation and worrying needlessly and fruitlessly about it. 
  • Worrying motivates me. We need to differentiate between unproductive worry and productive concern and problem solving.
  • Worrying helps me solve problems. Extreme worry is more likely to interfere with problem-solving. 
Tools to assist us with worry
  • Calm the nervous system with guided muscle relaxation, meditation, and exercise. 
  • Notice when you're worrying and any beliefs that reinforce worry.  Awareness of the process gives us more choice in how we respond.
  • Embrace uncertainty. Most of the things we care about in life involve uncertainty. It takes considerable practice to begin to embrace it.
  • Live in the present. Practice focusing your attention on the present in everyday activities like taking a shower, walking, or talking with a friend, as well as in more formal practices like meditation or yoga.
  • When we face our fears head-on, they tend to diminish. Deliberately accept what you're afraid of: "It's possible I'll miss my flight." 

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RELATED IDEAS

Simply stop for a few moments and focus on your breath. Filling your brain with oxygen will help it drive out fear.

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IDEAS

How to Cure Worry

In order to stop running away from the feeling of helplessness, we have to train ourselves to be okay with feeling helpless and out of control.

When you worry, try to identify the cause or trigger for the worry and notice how it makes you feel emotionally. Be willing to just feel and be with your uncomfortable emotions.
Push Past Procrastination

Focusing on worrying instead of solving your problems can become a form of procrastination. Plus, putting off responsibilities that you need to take care will only add to your worries.

Push past procrastination by making a list of all of the things that you need to get done. By writing a to-do list, you get all of those anxious thoughts out of your head and on paper.

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