Get to know your trigger thoughts and let them be - Deepstash

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Get to know your trigger thoughts and let them be

Most thoughts come and go because we don't give them any special attention. But some will attract our notice. These are our 'trigger thoughts'. If you pay enough attention to them, they can trigger bodily sensations and feelings.

A thought about an exciting upcoming event can activate warmth and joy. But a series of further thoughts can develop into worries. "What if they don't like me?" "What if..." If we continue to entertain these thoughts, they can compound. Instead, let them pass by. Don't spend energy on them.

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Postpone and reduce your worries

Introduce a worry-time into your day. For instance, from 7 pm to 8 pm, you allow yourself time to worry freely. When you feel the need to worry or ruminate about something during the day, try postponing these thoughts to your scheduled worry time.

Institut...

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Assumptions about overthinking

"If I worry about what could go wrong, I'll be better prepared to handle it." "If I go over what I did wrong, I can improve next time."

One may feel that worrying was beneficial but also caused unnecessary tension. One way to see if worry was valid is to evaluate the pros and cons...

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The downward spiral of overthinking

The downward spiral of overthinking

When we spend too much of our time analysing problems, we often end up with more questions than answers. Consistently overthinking can cause a range of symptoms such as insomnia, trouble concentrating and a lack of energy. In turn, it leads to further worries and finally becomes ...

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Attention training technique

Some people struggle to shift their attention during a trigger thought. The following 10-minute exercise may be helpful:

  • Focus on at least three environmental sounds: traffic, birdsong, building work, etc.
  • Practice tuning in to just ...

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Avoid avoidance and train your attention

People often fear their trigger thoughts and try to avoid them altogether, but doing so will not give you a chance to practice letting go of these thoughts. You can't learn to ride a bike without a bike.

When you feel ready, give yourself challenges that involve your trigger thoughts, then...

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Know what you can and can't control

Trigger thoughts happen automatically. But, you have a choice if you will engage in them. You can choose if you will answer the thought or ask more questions.

You can think of thoughts as someone calling you on the phone. You don't decide if the phone will...

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Unhelpful coping strategies

The strategies we use to calm down often cause more harm and lead to more overthinking. Unhelpful strategies include:

  • Constantly looking out for threats: For example, in health, you look for signs of illness in excess, leading to more health-related concerns.

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Get to Know Your Fears

  1. Spend five minutes a day checking in with the fearful thoughts that are running the show. Notice them. Acknowledge when those fears crop up and call them out.Β 
  2. Take a moment to reflect on what you know about those fears: When do they tend to make their appearance, what's their origin...

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