Scenarios in our heads that play like movies, scaring us, making us Anxious, making us worry--we all know them. We all know what worry means, we are all humans after all, capable of feeling the same feelings. We are more similar than we'd like to admit.
These little movies we play in our heads, they portray scenarios that haven't happened yet. We all know that. They show us what might happen. The chance that they will actually come to pass is extremely unlikely, still it is so hard not to believe them.
It takes an enormous amount of self-knowledge and self-discipline to be able to rise above our fears. Because those fears--they are damn good at making us believe they are telling the truth.
Thoughts Don't Come True
How many times did your thoughts actually come true? My worries never came to pass. I began observing them one day, and I only kept noticing that whenever I get anxious about something, it never actually ended up happening. Never.
So I drew the conclusion that if I feel anxiety bubbling up, that is basically a sign that my thoughts will not end up happening. So when worry arises in me, I immediately know now that I don't have to get caught up in it, because it will not end up happening anyway. What a relief.
You Can Never Imagine
A big part of Anxiety is that it makes you doubt your own ability to Handle things. It makes you believe that if the movie in your head does come true, you will not be able to Deal with it and it will be the worst thing in the world. Again, that is a lie.
I will tell you a funny story about this. When I was little, around 8 years old, I liked to read teen magazines. And in these magazines, there was always a section where questions about love, sex and the body were answered. These were the pages you pretended to skip over, but actually read in secret. In one issue, a girl wrote in with a problem. She was bleeding. She was too scared to tell her parents. I was shocked and felt sorry for that girl, hoping that I will never have to go through such a horrible experience.
Then I read the answer. This was something that happens to every girl. Every month. It was completely normal. I can't describe my dismay. I ran to my mother and asked her about it, and she confirmed this horrible information. I felt like I couldn't deal with bleeding every month, that just sounded unbearable.
But, surprise, I grew up, and it's not such a Big Deal to actually go through it every month. I can live with it. Survive it. Even think it's not a big deal. Even though my past little self thought it was the most horrible thing in the world that I could never handle.
I think this story illustrates perfectly how we can think that these movies in our heads would be the worst things to ever happen. And they would probably be hard to live though, yes. But not nearly as hard as we think. We choose our attitude, after all.
Imagining something will never even come close to actually living through it. Our mind just likes to make us think so. But we can actually live through anything with more ease than we can imagine.
Don't believe the character who plays you in your mind--they are way off. You can handle anything.
Conclusion: 3 Things to Remember
I would recommend you to remember the following points for when anxiety creeps into you:
1. If you feel anxious, the thoughts in your head are not true. You can be sure that what you think will not happen.
2. You can handle anything that comes. The thoughts that tell you otherwise are lying. So you can allow life to flow.
3. Imagining is not living. Everything looks so much worse in your head. In reality, everything is neutral.
To sum up: The movies in your head are not accurate and they will not come true. Even if they did, you could handle anything with ease. You are who you choose to be, after all. And peace is always an available choice.
“Your battles inspired me - not the obvious material battles but those that were fought and won behind your forehead.” - James Joyce