Can't you stop thinking about something? Do you often think about things that haven't happened yet but could happen? If so, you may be feeling anxious. Worry is actually a kind of thinking. Repetitive and unproductive thinking because it doesn't solve any problem, and sometimes makes the problem even more complicated. When you worry, your stress level goes up. This will affect your ability to make decisions, your happiness, and your relationships with other people. You may think at first that worry is not a big thing and needs attention, but worry can quickly overwhelm and take over your life. If you feel like your worry is getting out of hand, it means it's time for you to start taking over your mind and getting rid of your worry.
Method 1 of 5: Recognizing Worries
Step 1. Know what worry is
You can't solve a problem without knowing what the problem is. First of all, you need to know what kind of worry you are experiencing.
- When you're worried about something, write it down. Start by noting how you feel, what's going on around you, and what thoughts go through your mind. Pay attention to the various feelings that occur throughout your body, such as tight muscles or stomach pain. Once noted, you can begin to analyze the cause of your worry.
- Ask the people around you for help to make you aware of any time you are worried. When people are worried, they usually ask questions as if they could guess what was going to happen. Usually, people who are worried will show their concern. Friends and family will know that they are worried. Ask them to alert you to a time you were worried; that way, you can know what's worrying you.
Step 2. Separate what is real and what is not
Anxiety is born of the unknown. Worries make sense because the unknown is scary. There are many possibilities that can only be ascertained in the future. The problem is, most of these possibilities won't come true in the future, and you'll end up wasting your energy thinking about pointless things. Thus, worry is something that is not productive. When weighing your worries, you need to be clear about whether you're thinking about something that actually happened or something that could happen.
- Write down what you are worried about. Circle what is happening and cross out what is not happening, but could happen. Focus your attention on what is going on; that's all you can do now.
- You can plan and prepare for the future, but until something is done, that's the only planning and preparation you can do in the present.
Step 3. Reflect on whether your thoughts are productive
When you're worried, your mind can quickly run away from the problem at hand and start thinking about what could happen. When you're in a stressful situation, it's hard to tell if you're thinking straight. Ponder your thoughts: can what you're thinking help solve the problem? If not, then you are worried.
- Let's take an example. Your car is broken. You need to go to work but can't because there's no car. You start to think, if you don't go to work, you might get fired. Then you start thinking about how you won't be able to pay the rent and might be kicked out of the apartment. It's easy for your mind to run and run away from the problems that are in front of you. However, if you keep your focus on the situation at hand, you won't lose your job or your apartment. You don't know if these things will actually happen, and that should be a relief.
- Another example. You love your child very much. You don't want anything to happen to them, so you take all steps to make sure they don't get sick. You can't sleep at night because you're busy thinking about the various ways they'll get sick the next day. If you focus your thoughts on their health, safety, and happiness, you will be able to spend quality time with them, which is good for them. You can do that by returning yourself to the present and stopping your spiral of worrying.
Step 4. Write down the various things you are worried about from the past, present, and future
Many people worry about their past and how it affects their present life. Other people worry about the things they are doing now, and how those things will affect their future. There are even people who worry about everything: they are constantly busy thinking about the past, present, and future. Write down your worries to ease your mind.
- Write a diary in which you fill in all your worries today. You can write this diary before bed or whenever you feel worried.
- Log your every concern in your phone. Use a memo app on your phone or a diary app.
Method 2 of 5: Share Your Concerns with Others
Step 1. Share your concerns with someone you trust
This will help you stop worrying. Enlist the help of a friend or family member who understands your feelings.
- Let the person know that you understand you are worried, but that you need to talk about it for relief. They will certainly understand and will be happy to assist you.
- If possible, find someone who shares your concerns so you don't feel alone. You will be able to lower your worries with that person by focusing on what is in the present moment.
Step 2. Write down situations that worry you
Write until you can't write anymore. Free-form writing like this will show various things that your subconscious mind is currently thinking. Maybe you will be surprised by the results because usually your worries are behind things that you do not understand consciously.
Sometimes worry stems from the feeling that you are going through something difficult alone. You may feel more supported and comfortable after discussing it with others
Step 3. Share your concerns with a therapist
A professional therapist can help you let go of worries. They understand that worry is a type of thinking that can be changed. You just need to understand it and follow the expert's guidance.
- Look for a therapist who has often worked with people with anxiety or worry issues.
- Tell the therapist that you are trying to get rid of your worries so you can feel happier.
- Don't be afraid to talk about your concerns in detail. Sometimes that's a way to put your mind at ease.
Method 3 of 5: Getting Rid of Worry
Step 1. Reflect on the benefits of worrying
You want to take care of yourself, and the opposite is true: you don't want to hurt yourself. Remember that worrying can hurt you. If you are honest with yourself, it will be easier for you to let go of your worries.
Step 2. Count your breaths
Inhale through your nose, then exhale through your mouth. Count your breaths because worry can build up with high levels of stress. This will reduce the feeling of stress.
- If after this breathing practice you still feel worried, think about the worry for a moment, then use your breath to let it go. Use your breath to blow worries away from your mind.
- Do as much as you need. There are people who need 10 times, there are also those who need 20 times. This number does not have to be predetermined. Consider every 10 breaths.
Step 3. Take 30 minutes to worry
Control your worry by limiting it to 30 minutes. After those 30 minutes are over, instruct yourself to focus on something else. Use an alarm to help you, so you don't have to worry too much after the time is up.
Step 4. Use thought-stopping techniques
When you start to worry, tell yourself to stop. The thought of command will replace the thought of worry. You can say it out loud or just silently. Many therapists use this technique to help people stop negative thoughts. When worry arises in your mind, it will quickly disappear if you tell yourself to stop. But you need to remember that this is a behavior that you must learn on your own. It may be less effective at first, but with practice, you can stop negative thoughts immediately. There are people who can do this technique better than anyone else. If you find this technique not working for you, use mindfulness techniques.
Step 5. Get used to not worrying
Wear a rubber band on your wrist. Whenever you're worried, pull on the rubber band and snap it around your wrist. It is also a kind of thought stopping technique that can help you stop worrying thoughts and refocus on the present.
Step 6. Hold onto something
Research shows that people who use their hands are less likely to worry. When you are focused on an object in your hand, you will not focus on whatever you are thinking. You can hold a tennis ball, for example, or a prayer beads-shaped bracelet. Count the beads on the bracelet or hold the ball hard and count the rhythm.
Method 4 of 5: Taking Care of Yourself
Step 1. Get enough sleep
Most people need at least seven hours of sleep per night. Lack of sleep can increase your stress level and lead your mind to worry. You need to get enough sleep.
- If you have trouble sleeping at night because you're worried, seek help from your doctor. Maybe you need sleeping pills to get your sleep back on track. That might be enough to allay the worry.
- If you want a natural sleeping pill, use melatonin. Consult a doctor before use.
Step 2. Eat healthy
The various vitamins and nutrients you get from healthy foods can help reduce your blood pressure and improve brain function. Both of these can help reduce stress. Less stress can lead to less worry.
Step 3. Exercise
Exercise can lower stress levels, and then lower anxiety levels. Running can help you get rid of worry because you will have a hard time worrying when your body is active. Physical activity releases endorphins that will calm you down and make you feel energized enough to get through the day.
- Ride a bike with beautiful scenery all around you.
- Run in the park.
- Play tennis with friends.
- Walk in the garden.
- Go up the mountain with friends.
Method 5 of 5: Meditation
Step 1. Start meditating every day
Research shows that meditation can relieve anxiety in the brain. Meditation can calm the brain. Since worry is rooted in anxiety, if you don't worry, your worry will decrease or you won't worry at all.
Step 2. Sit cross-legged with your arms at either side of your body
This position will calm your body. When you can calm your body down, your brain will take it as a sign that you are not in danger and can begin the relaxation process.
- If you can't sit cross-legged, sit comfortably.
- You can lie down, but make sure you don't fall asleep!
- If you're sitting on a bench, make sure there's a soft area around your head for cushioning in case you fall asleep. People who meditate can sometimes fall asleep because they feel too relaxed.
Step 3. Close your eyes and focus on your breath
You have an internal calming mechanism, which is your breathing. When you focus on breathing, you will notice when you are breathing too fast. If you're breathing too fast, slow it down by inhaling deeply and exhaling outward.
Count your breaths. Inhale for three seconds then exhale for three seconds. Before exhaling, hold for a second or two. To calm yourself down, breathe slowly
Step 4. Focus your thoughts on how you feel in the moment and allow yourself to feel calm and at peace
Pay attention to your internal thoughts when you meditate. If you feel restless, repeat the word "calm down." You can use other words or sounds as long as they soothe you.
If you think about something that worries you, don't fight it. You will even feel restless. Pay attention to the thought, then let it go. You can also say: "Let go."
Step 5. Stand up slowly
When you're done, slowly open your eyes, sit quietly for a few moments, then stand up. If necessary, stretch your body, then continue your activity quietly. You can stop feeling restless (and thus, stop worrying) by meditating in the middle of the day.
- Use the methods above if you're worried about too much or too long.
- Letting go of those worries takes time. Keep practicing until these methods work for you.
- Don't let yourself fidget because you're worried. This will make your problem worse. Allow yourself to feel worried, then try to eliminate it with the various methods above.
- If you still can't get rid of your worries, ask a therapist or professional doctor for help.