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Ways To Combat Worrying
Worrying can make you physically anxious for example, increase in heart rate, butterflies
and feeling tense. When people experience the physical symptoms of anxiety, this usually
leads to more worrying about the symptoms, creating a vicious cycle.
There are lots of practical steps you can take to combat your worrying and to break the
vicious cycle. These are techniques that I share with my clients at my NLP and
Hypnotherapy practice in Hertfordshire.
Identify and clarify the worrying thought: Often worrying thoughts are experienced as
several fleeting ideas and images that race through your mind. Spending the time writing
down exactly what it is that is worrying you brings the thought out into the open. This in
itself can show the worrying thought up as being less scary then when it was just in your
head. Sometimes these thoughts are so automatic and quick that I will spend time at my
NLP and Hypnotherapy practice, Hertfordshire helping clients identify worrying
Explore what the worse thing that could happen would be if the thought was true: Often
you will find that it is much easier to cope with a clearly defined worst outcome, then the
product of your imagination, which is usually fantasy based and much worse!
Look at the thought logically: This involves examining the objective evidence of whether
the thought is true. Create two columns on a piece of paper and on one list evidence to
support the thought and under the other list evidence that disputes the thought. This is a
process that is used at Hypnotherapy, Hertfordshire. The therapist works with the client
to elicit the evidence, using a series of questions designed to help the person broaden
their view of the situation.
Another point of view: Try looking at the worry from another perspective. For example,
what would you advise a loved one who was concerned over the same thought. Also
think about other times in your life when you would feel different about the worry.
What are the benefits or losses of holding onto this thought: Look at whether holding
onto your worrying thought helps or hinders you.
Over-generalising: Are you viewing the situation/self in all or nothing terms e.g.
complete disaster------- totally perfect ? Actually rate your thought out of 100% to remind
yourself that your worry is probably somewhere other then complete disaster on a sliding
Take Action: Rather then passively worrying which does not benefit you, look at whether
there is anything you can do about the situation. Make a list of action steps that you can
Free time: If you are always worrying then become stricter with yourself and how you
spend your time. Dedicate a set time to worrying, ensuring that within your time you set
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goals for action or work on your worry by going through all the steps to combat worrying
already discussed. Then set dedicated time each day for relaxing - time where you will
practice distracting your thoughts from worrying. Becoming proficient at a good body
relaxation technique can be really useful