“If the problem can be solved then why worry? If the problem cannot be solved worrying will do you no good.” – Shantideva
Worrying has always been a special trait of mine. I like to worry about family, deadlines and serious illnesses that I might have contracted from using a public restroom. It if fair to say that a lot of my mental energy is spent on worry.
A few years ago (after a month long worrying episode) I decided that I had had enough of worrying so much and looked for some practical solutions to beat this stupid emotion. While I cannot profess to have defeated my worrying habit (my friends reading will attest to this) I have certainly learned a few good ways of dealing with it. Now I want to show you.
How to deal with worry and stop worrying
Worry consumes a lot of people. I am not the only one. The thing about worrying that is so crippling is that it lasts and lasts and lasts. Even though the event might be weeks or months off we still worry about it. Take the example of the dentist. People who are afraid of the dentist will think about it for weeks before their appointment. It is quite draining.
Here are some ways you can teach yourself to beat worry and live a more relaxed and happy life.
1. Learn to train your mind
One of the first things you need to realize is that you are in charge of your mind. It is NOT the other way around. Right now, as you are reading this post, I want you to realize for yourself that you are in control of your own mind. From this very moment on you will not let worry control you, you will now control the worry.
This is a small but very important detail to understand. Once you make the shift from “helpless” to “in control” there is a lot more you can do about the situation. Learning that you control you mind is the first step to beating worry.
2. Use logic to internally debate the worry
In Buddhism they have a very important text called The Seven Points of Mind Training. This text is all about using short “slogans” to train your unruly monkey mind. The idea is that whenever a disturbing emotion arises you use a slogan to combat that emotion. Over time your mind becomes so familiar with the slogans that the negative emotions are replaced with healthy ones. Masters of this text have complete control over their thoughts and emotions.
Let me give you an example. One of the slogans in the text is “Condense all blames in to one”. The idea behind this slogan is that whenever something bad happens you should consider that it is your own fault. At first you might think that this is a little strange. For example, if someone cuts you off in traffic you might want to yell and scream at them. But this slogan is telling you that it is your own fault. Gradually, as you apply this slogan, you will start to see that even though someone cut you off in traffic it is your own fault that you got angry. There was nothing inherently “angry” in their action. The anger originated in your own mind. So, condense all blames in to one. [Read more…] about How to Deal With Your Worry and Stop Worrying Today