Taking a different view

It is perfectly normal to worry once in a while. There will always be things in life to worry about. And to a certain extent worry can be good. It can cause us to take appropriate action like wearing and mask and washing our hands during covid.

However sometimes our thinking may not be helpful and worrying can get out of hand when it stops us from doing things, getting a good night’s sleep or being unable to have fun.

Let try and correct some of our unhelpful thinking by not believing everything our mind is telling us and looking at other ways to think.


Social anxiety

I think everyone gets anxious when they are giving a presentation or meeting a new group of people. But it can become a problem if you are worried you’ll do something embarrassing and this stops you from going to social events.

Likewise, if you are afraid that people won’t approve of you or like you, that can stop you from standing up for yourself. If you feel that you’re too embarrassed, self-conscious, or indeed if you believe that others are thinking badly of you, then you might benefit from some additional support. Talk to an adult you trust or to a professional.

Try repeating the following messages:

I am not perfect, but neither is anyone else. It’s OK to just be me.

I am not a mindreader. I think I know what others are thinking about me, but in truth, I don’t. I am going to stop guessing and let go of that idea.

Everyone has problems. People are more concerned about their own lives.

The people that really matter already accept me exactly as I am.

I accept myself as I am, and I don’t have to put on a display. I can just be present and enjoy the experience.

Silently repeat, “I’m not the cause and I’m not the cure,” whenever someone around you is being unreasonable. Many anxious souls are overly responsible for others’ feelings.


General anxiety

General anxiety is when you are worried about things in your life, like participating in class, playing in a competition or making or losing friends. Or when we worry about problems in the world, ranging from the environment to small things, like making the wrong decision. We all experience general worry from time to time. It’s when it plays on our minds constantly and perhaps leaves us feeling exhausted that we might need to get some help from an adult we trust or from a professional.

Try repeating the following messages:

Your imagination is both powerful and creative. And hardly ever right. Just be the witness to your thoughts and let them pass.

Can I take any action to resolve this problem? If the answer is “No,” then say “I accept myself and I give these thoughts permission to pass.”

I don’t have to believe everything I think. The thought of a tiger is not a tiger.

Even if something bad happens, I can handle it.

I accept that I am not in control of everything. I accept that it’s ok not to try so hard.

What we can accept, we can use to transform our relationships.

What would you tell a friend who was going through this exact situation?