Is the Worry Accurate?
Be specific. Instead of thinking “I’m depressed!” say “I’m angry”, “I’m worried about not having enough money for the next month,” or “There is conflict in the family caused by…………….”
You will feel more in control if you are clear about the nature of your worry. You can more easily develop a positive attitude, work out solutions and make good decisions.
TAKING ACTION on worries you can influence
Write each big, urgent worry as a heading on its own sheet of paper.
Organize all sheets related to a specific problem area – such as work or relationships – in a folder or loose leaf book.
Accumulate a list of books, articles, ideas and people who might help – family and friends, acquaintances, people at work, your doctor, or a counselor.
Brainstorm. Let your mind wander – write down any and every solution that pops in to it. Generate ideas as fast as you can, no matter how ridiculous they seem (this encourages creative thinking). Out of a hundred ideas one really useful one might surface. Keep a wide open mind!
“The best way to have a good idea is to have lots of ideas”.
Relaxation and imagery techniques can help. You may find better solutions when you sit back and take a look at the problem in a more relaxed and creative mood.
A huge problem? – Break it down into parts and deal with each part separately. For example, if you are laid off, the parts might be: money problems; where and how to find a new job; what field to change to if you must; the response of your spouse.
Once you have a Plan for the Worry:
– How do you see this happening? Picture each step.
– What do you need in order to do it? Make a list.
– Who do you need to help you? What do they have to do?
– When will you carry out each step? Write down a date.
WHAT TO DO WHEN THERE’S NO SOLUTION
There are no neat solutions for some problems. Here are some options:
1. Focus on the present
Don’t dwell on the future – or the past! Learn from the past, let it go, then focus on the present moment.
“There is only one way to happiness and that is to cease worrying about things which are beyond the power of our will.”- Epictetus
It’ s not easy, but accepting any bad situation that seems out of your control can be your first step to reducing your stress. You don’t have to like it, agree with it, or approve of it, but to accept it without struggling will make you feel stronger.
Acceptance does not mean sitting around doing nothing. If you decide you can accept something, you will actually be more able to act because you’ll be in a calmer and stronger frame of mind.
Even if you can’t do much to change the thing that ís stressing you, it’s always a smart move to get busy doing something else constructive. Don’t sit around feeling sorry for yourself for too long. DO SOMETHING! This is a great anti-depression weapon!
Consciously deciding to face up to the worst that could possibly happen, often means that you see just how unlikely and ridiculous it actually is and you can let it go. If the worst is quite possible, then vividly picture yourself coping well with it – bravely and resourcefully. This can help you let the worry go and focus on dealing with the actual problems of the present.
Shakespeare wrote: “To fear the worst, oft cures the worst”.
Take care doing this if you feel really hopeless. See your doctor as soon as possible and tell him or her how you are feeling, because focusing on the worst outcomes may cause you to be even more depressed.
Read more: 25 ways to manage stress
Read more: Maintain a healthy life balance