Is there a possibility that you can turn off your anxiety? The part of the brain called the amygdala can function like a power switch for anxiety, studies show.
Most people like to think that depression is a sadness, but in reality, it is about a terrible emotional pain that includes difficulties with concentration and memory.
Anxiety has a close relation to fear and yes, fear can be helpful. If a projectile is coming your way and it looks like it may hit, you will have a burst of fear. The adrenaline that you feel will help you get out of the way. The part of the brain that gives us that dose of fear and anxiety is called the amygdala.
What is the amygdala?
The amygdala is like a sixth sense which keeps us aware of all kinds of dangers. When you become aware of something that might signal danger, the amygdala jumps into action and sends signals to the brain, which processes that information.
Then this information is sent to the body to evade the oncoming danger. That is why your heart begins to beat profusely and releases adrenaline, which acts to make your mind aware. This awareness sends motivation to your muscles.
If you constantly sense danger signals, it becomes almost impossible for you to stay calm and rational enough for the brain to switch off the amygdala.
To turn off the anxiety-related response of your amygdala, you need to change the way you view things. You must find a way to prove to your brain that this is a normal situation and not anything dangerous. You need a change of thinking that gives you a different emotion for how you feel about the situation.
To restructure your cognitive reflexes, you can utilize these steps:
- Relax as much as possible to focus on breathing.
- Take a deep breath for a few seconds and let out a long exhale.
- Think about what is triggering your anxiety. If you feel too anxious, then halt.
- Try breathing again and start the same process when you have calmed down.
- Pay attention to what you are thinking.
- In your situation, you will trigger automatic thoughts.
This plays an important role in discovering what is troubling you. Being aware of these thoughts is important to restructure your cognitive reflexes.
How to control your triggered thoughts
You need to be able to see what is really in front of you, versus what your anxiety is leading you to believe. Your thoughts are easier to control than your feelings. So, you need to change the thoughts that have made you feel negative, or they will probably reoccur.
You should also concentrate on the thoughts that come to mind when you visualize the situation. The thoughts you want to control are walking hand in hand with your anxious feelings. Write them down.
Now be realistic and evaluate these thoughts by asking the following questions:
- Is there any evidence to prove that your negative thoughts could be true?
- What is some evidence that makes these thoughts relevant?
- Is there anything to prove your thoughts could be false?
When you have triggered thoughts, you often believe them without question. That is why they have so much influence over you. There is a good chance that all the evidence doesn’t point one way, and this weakens the thoughts that control you.
It won’t be easy to convince your mind that your triggered thoughts aren’t true. The more positive evidence you can conjure, the better. It doesn’t even matter if you can come up with only a few things. All you need is support, to battle these triggered thoughts.
There is always a better side to things, and there are things about your situation that aren’t so challenging. Get a grip on your triggered thoughts and bring them into the light so that you can judge them objectively. Find out if you really have anything to be concerned with, not anxious about.
When you feel less anxious, you will be able to act more effectively, and that exiles anxiety. In turn, you must take a deeper look at what thoughts control your feelings.
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