Try these mental tricks to stop worrying so much

Why do we worry? Often times, it comes from our desire to control our environment or the outcome of a situation. The problem, however, is that the more you try to control everything around you, the more anxious you’ll feel. It’s a vicious cycle to break — worry, try to gain control, fail, and worry again. Repeat.

Worrying about things you can’t control — like the state of the economy or someone else’s behavior — will drain you of the mental strength you need to be your best. Fortunately, we have two things you can do the next time you catch yourself worrying about things you can’t control so that you can reclaim a sense of calm.

Develop a realistic sense of control: Identify what is within your control and what isn’t. For example, you can give your employees the tools they need to succeed, but you can’t force them to be productive. When you strike a healthy balance of control, you’ll see that you can choose your own attitude and behavior, but you can’t control many external factors. 

So when you’re faced with a problem or experiencing discomfort, ask yourself, “Is this a problem I can solve? Or do I need to change how I feel about the problem?” If it’s within your control, tackle the problem. If it’s out of your control, focus on changing your emotional state. Use healthy coping skills, like engaging in a hobby or practicing meditation, to deal with the uncomfortable emotions that get stirred up when things are out of your control.

Schedule time to worry: There isn’t a magic trick or special pill that will make you stop worrying right away. There is a psychological trick, however, that can help you contain your worrying. The trick involves scheduling time to worry. It sounds ridiculous on the surface. But it really works. And there are studies to back it up. Set aside 15 minutes each day to worry. Mark it on your calendar, or add it to your schedule. Make it consistent if you can. Think something like, “I’ll worry from 7 to 7:15 p.m., every night.”

Once you arrive at your worry time, then worry all you want. Sit and think about all the worries that are outside of your control. You can even write them down if you prefer. Then, after 15 minutes have passed, tell yourself it’s time to get back to your everyday life. Get up and go about your usual business. With consistent practice, research shows you’ll contain your worries to just 15 minutes a day. That’s a big improvement if you’re used to worrying 24/7.

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Try these mental tricks to stop worrying so much

Why do we worry? Often times, it comes from our desire to control our environment or the outcome of a situation. The problem, however, is that the more you try to control everything around you, the more anxious you’ll feel. It’s a vicious cycle to break — worry, try to gain control, fail, and worry again. Repeat.

Worrying about things you can’t control — like the state of the economy or someone else’s behavior — will drain you of the mental strength you need to be your best. Fortunately, we have two things you can do the next time you catch yourself worrying about things you can’t control so that you can reclaim a sense of calm.

Develop a realistic sense of control: Identify what is within your control and what isn’t. For example, you can give your employees the tools they need to succeed, but you can’t force them to be productive. When you strike a healthy balance of control, you’ll see that you can choose your own attitude and behavior, but you can’t control many external factors. 

So when you’re faced with a problem or experiencing discomfort, ask yourself, “Is this a problem I can solve? Or do I need to change how I feel about the problem?” If it’s within your control, tackle the problem. If it’s out of your control, focus on changing your emotional state. Use healthy coping skills, like engaging in a hobby or practicing meditation, to deal with the uncomfortable emotions that get stirred up when things are out of your control.

Schedule time to worry: There isn’t a magic trick or special pill that will make you stop worrying right away. There is a psychological trick, however, that can help you contain your worrying. The trick involves scheduling time to worry. It sounds ridiculous on the surface. But it really works. And there are studies to back it up. Set aside 15 minutes each day to worry. Mark it on your calendar, or add it to your schedule. Make it consistent if you can. Think something like, “I’ll worry from 7 to 7:15 p.m., every night.”

Once you arrive at your worry time, then worry all you want. Sit and think about all the worries that are outside of your control. You can even write them down if you prefer. Then, after 15 minutes have passed, tell yourself it’s time to get back to your everyday life. Get up and go about your usual business. With consistent practice, research shows you’ll contain your worries to just 15 minutes a day. That’s a big improvement if you’re used to worrying 24/7.

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