Posts Tagged With: Perspective
The state of being anxious and troubled over actual or potential problems is worry.
Worry is a way of thinking. Imagining the worst. Rushed responses, reacting under fear or duress, work deadlines are all forms of worry. When we rush we worry; while worrying we force ourselves to think about what will happen next. Instead, we should focus on what we can do now. When we think less, think slowly and think positively, then we can understand our thoughts and stay practical. Thinking clearly in the present situation, helps us visualize possible outcomes and next steps. As we begin to think clearly in the present, we programme ourselves to picture the future too. This dissipates anxiety over unknown possibilities. Worrying over how tasks will be completed and creating self-doubts over our competence, limits our ability to respond to challenges.
Flexibility is one solution to overcome worry. This covers acceptance and allows alternate thought processes. It lets us accommodate the unforeseen situations that we encounter and enables us to make the best of things. To an extent worrying is good stress. It can force one to look for creative answers, out of the box solutions. But you need to be in control of these situations.
If you are a worry wart and constantly fret about everything and anything – from health to wealth and everything in between and it sounds like you may be worrying your life away, you are a victim of chronic worrying. This is a mental habit that can be broken and you can train your brain to stay calm and look at life from a more balanced, less fearful perspective.
To tackle your chronic worrying problem, start first to distinguish between solvable and unsolvable worries. When a worry pops into your head, ask yourself whether the problem is something that can be solved. Is the problem something you’re currently facing, rather than an imaginary one? If the problem is imaginary, how likely is it to happen? Can you do something about the problem or prepare for it, or is it out of your control?
Solvable worries are those on which you can act immediately. Start brainstorming. Make a list of the possible solutions. It is not necessary to find the perfect solution. Focus on the things in your control. Once you have an action plan, you’ll feel much less worried. Developing the ability to embrace your feelings – feel grounded – help to control worrying tendencies.
Chronic worriers can’t stand doubt or unpredictability. They need to know with 100 percent certainty what’s going to happen. Worrying is then seen as a tool to predict the future. The problem is, this doesn’t work. You may feel safer when you’re worrying, but it’s just an illusion. Focusing on negatives won’t stop them from happening. It will only keep you from enjoying the good things in the present. So, if you want to stop worrying, start by accepting uncertainty. Ask yourself – ‘Is it possible to be certain about everything in life? How would having certainty in life be helpful? Will bad things happen just because they are uncertain? Is it possible to live with the thought that something negative may happen? Don’t look at the world in ways that make it seem more dangerous than it really is. Or treat every negative thought as if it were fact.
Your feelings are impacted by the company you keep. Emotions are contagious. People with whom we spend more time have a greater effect on our mental health. Spend less time with people who make you anxious. Choose your confidantes carefully. Few people will help you introspect, to improve perspective, while most will feed into your worries, doubts, and fears.
Talk therapy can help chronic worriers worry less by getting to the root of their issues. Individuals need to understand what causes their anxiety or what it is related to. Talking to supportive people helps you dig deep enough and go back to the origins of your worrying nature.
Since, worrying is usually focused on the future, the ancient practices of mindfulness and meditation can help by bringing focus back to the present. This strategy is based on observing and then letting them go. Acknowledge your anxious thoughts and feelings. Don’t try to ignore, fight, or control them. Instead, simply observe them from an outsider’s perspective, without being judgemental. Let your worries go. When you don’t try to control anxious thoughts, they pass by.
Using meditation to stay focused on the present is a simple concept, but it takes practice to reap the benefits. Your mind will inevitably keep wandering back to your worries. Don’t let this frustrate you. Each time you return to the present, you are re-inforcing the habit that will eventually help you break free of the worry cycle.
In situations where nothing can be done to change the outcome, worrying can still serve a motivating function in preparing you for bad news – if it comes. In essence, worry often provides impetus to do something rather than nothing.
“Life is too short to worry about anything. You had better enjoy it because the next day promises nothing.” – Eric Davis
“We aren’t who we want to be. We are what society demands. We are what our parents choose. We don’t want to disappoint anyone; we have a great need to be loved. So we smother the best in us. Gradually, the light of our dreams turns into the monster of our nightmares. They become things not done, possibilities not lived.” – Paulo Coelho
All of us have been tuned to create pictures of ourselves in our own minds. Pictures of what we believe we are. We can wrap this idea around us as much as we want, but that will not make it true. The age-old question we are asked at every family gathering, every counselling session, every casual conversation is “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Mind you, this has nothing to do with the person you actually are. It’s a trick question. Most often the questioner is not really interested in your answer. He/She is just opening a door to seed your consciousness with his/her own thoughts. Thereby super-imposing your personality with a neat, presentable cover supposedly acceptable to society. You’re trapped.
You don’t want to disappoint anyone – parents, teachers, friends, your peer group. So you acquiesce – accept something reluctantly but without protest. And you gradually start believing it. The lie becomes your life. Now, your thoughts, actions, behaviour, everything starts adapting to this new perception which is being created for you. This persona you are creating is slowly suppressing your inherent self. Dimming that inner light which is so essential to present the reality to the outside world. You don’t move on enough. You stay because of reasons that are usually non-existent. You make up reasons why one cannot do something or go somewhere. Because your inner soul has been squashed. That voice has been silenced. Of course, one has responsibilities that cannot be easily abandoned, but those are not usually the things that keep us fixed in one spot. It is your belief, your idea about what it means, what is required of you, what is expected of you. Because, you don’t want to disappoint anyone.
Here’s where things can change. Must change. The good news is: You are whoever you choose to be.
It solely depends on how you choose to view yourself. Say, “I don’t want to care about the way other people perceive my lifestyle. I am what I am, I do what I do. End of story.”
No sooner have you uttered this magic mantra, the world completely turns around. Everything you thought to be true and necessary and wanted can be changed and discarded and thrown away. The truth is inside you. Awaken and find yourself. You do not need permission to be yourself. It’s your right to be who you want to be. It’s your mind, body and spirit, so how you use the three is your choice and your choice only. Once you become aware of this your inner voice can be assertive again. That inner light will start shining brighter. That is the light which you need to illuminate your path in this dark world. Nothing else.
Since, your self-perceptions were instilled before you had any say in the matter, learning to change how you see yourself helps find hidden strengths. Self-perception is simply being aware of who you are, what you’re like, and what you’re capable of. Your self-perception must project your positive self-esteem. But it should also acknowledge your shortcomings. Adjusting your self-perception is basically being honest with yourself. Recognizing your weak points helps you identify when you need to ask for help. Acknowledging your strengths gives you the confidence, if you feel down.
You can’t grow if you don’t try. You will have to actually plant the seed in your life. Nothing is holding you back except yourself. Unleash the possibilities to get things done. Opening your mind to new things means trying new things. Make it happen; don’t make excuses! Don’t restrict yourself. When you pre-fix ideas of what you’re “able” to do or not do, you have limited your opportunities. Open your world by unlatching this door and you can create, experience, feel, and learn.
All those things you considered impossible are simply so because you taught yourself to believe that. Whatever you believe you achieve, so do not let fear stand in the way of your desires. If you’ve been dying to do something, but you fear failure down the line, it’s time to let go of your fears and make your move right now. Just by taking action, you open your mind to new beliefs and possibilities. Fear should be what it really is – just another way of telling you to take action.
The time to be yourself is now, not next week or next year.
We usually know what the kind thing to do is – and kindness when it is done to us, and register its absence when it is not. We are never as kind as we want to be, but nothing outrages us more than people being unkind to us. There is nothing we feel more consistently deprived of than kindness; the unkindness of others has become our contemporary complaint. Kindness consistently pre-occupies us, and yet most of us are unable to live a life guided by it.
Kindness is a good habit and it has a reverberating effect that echoes and creates waves for a good life. Helping others brings a deep satisfaction to both – the receiver of the help, and the one who provides the help. By recognizing another’s need for help and acting on it in a compassionate manner, makes the recipient feel valued. It also brings a feeling of pride for the giver and they feel better about themselves. Over time people who do good deeds develop a happy and joyful personality that attracts those they associate with. Like a magnet, kindness begets kindness. Kindness makes people want to be around us. One of the most common responses to kindness is gratitude – and that means people appreciating what we’ve done for them and seeking out our company.
- Do one kind thing for yourself each day which doesn’t involve buying something. Congratulate yourself on your achievements, or have a long, relaxing soak in the bath!
- Do one kind thing for someone else each day. Open the door, give a genuine compliment, or donate some money. Do something, anything, as long as it helps somebody else.
- Resist any urges to be unkind. Stop and reflect: What are you hoping to achieve from this? And if someone is unkind to you, don’t take it personally.
“Beginning today, treat everyone you meet as if they were going to be dead by midnight. Extend to them all the care, kindness and understanding you can muster, and do it with no thought of any reward. Your life will never be the same again.” – Og Mandino