UpGradeMe Lifehacks– “Everyday do a little bit to be a little better”
In this UpGradeMe life hack article I want to show you that anxiety is not out of your control. It’s also not something you need to just endure for the rest of your life! I know that because I’ve spend a significant portion of my life dealing with a constant low-level anxiety. I learnt the techniques I share in this article 6 years ago and I found I was able to upgrade my life from a mindset of fear to one of peace and confidence.
There are two main techniques that you need to discover and practice on a daily basis that will return control over your emotional life. Number one is develop a daily habit if monitoring and altering your internal narrative, you know that story that your telling yourself about life as it happens, happened and will happen.
You see your anxiety is most likely caused by your fearful story about your life. Now I say most likely because sometimes it’s not and I’ll cover that in my next article “Why do I feel anxious for no reason?” Your nervous system is designed to scan for dangers, if it thinks danger is present it will release a cocktail of chemicals into your nervous system that feel like anxiety. This is good if you really are in danger because it means you’re going to be better able to handle it because your muscles are tightening, your heart is beating faster and so on.
Generally though, you are actually in no danger at all. The frontal cortex, the part of your brain that processes information and facilitates imagination, can actually trigger this flight or fight response simply by thinking about perceived dangers, that may not even exist!
That’s right, your thoughts trigger off the feelings of anxiety in your body!
That means in short, that your thoughts cause your emotions. Now this is an amazing relief for those of us who suffer from chronic anxiety.
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Negative self-talk is the primary cause of anxiety, fearful thoughts will cause fearful feelings! It’s that simple, a daily habit of mental hygiene, where we listen to self-talk and challenge negative, self-defeating thoughts can slowly start to transform the way your internal narrative flows. If you listen to an anxious person’s internal story you would also start to feel anxious! If you listen to a peaceful, confident persons internal narrative you would feel peaceful and confident. It’s that simple, but most people don’t do that hard task, a daily habit of checking and challenging negative self-talk.
So what do I do about that?
Well this is where you’ll need to do some work. Many people I have spoken to over the years haven’t developed the really important skill, of listening to self-talk during feelings of stress and anxiety and challenging the self-talk that is negative and destructive.
When you start to feel anxiety, stop and listen to your self-talk, maybe write it down, ask your self; is this story i’m narrating about this situation or about my past, or my future, the truth? Will this story motivate me to be better or demotivate me and trap in a negative spiral? Journal out the main themes and challenge them, write a new theme and practice telling your brain that story. Neuroscience has shown that when we change those narratives, we actually form new neuron connections! So basically by changing our thoughts we are actually changing the shape of our brain, which leads to calmer more confident emotions. So start Downgrading anxiety today.
On UpGradeMe I want to show you how “Every day you can do a little bit to be a little better” so what’s stopping you starting today?