STRESS, we hear about it all the time. Stress about work, performance, money, health, relationships, the holidays, etc. There seems to be no end to contributors to stress. Some would even suggest that stress is our default state, just because there is so much to be stressed about.
The simple truth, however, is that stress arises from one thing and one thing only. How can this be you ask, when people are stressed about so many different things? The number one cause of stress is OVERTHINKING.
Overthinking happens when:
1. You imagine all sorts of worst-case outcomes that may or may not happen
2. You wonder what other people might be thinking about you
3. You assume that what happened last time will happen again even though we know the past can no longer exist anywhere in the physical universe
4. You tell yourself you are not good enough, not capable enough, haven’t accomplished even though in the past you seem to have risen to the occasion and have done just fine.
5. You believe that your feelings are coming from outside circumstances, none of which you can control.
A busy, overthinking mind leads to feelings of anxiety, pressure, depression, frustration, discouragement, gloom and doom. When you understand that it is your thoughts causing your anguish, not the situation, you are in a position to be able to resolve current issues and handle whatever challenges come along (if they ever do).
You already know a way to quiet down an overactive mind – you have done it many times before. You step back from what you are doing and go for a walk, take a nap, bake a cake or go out for coffee. When you come back to any situation with a calm, present mind, you see what needs to be done. It’s built into the human system that we have the insight and ‘presence of mind’ to make sound decisions, respond to any crisis and come up with creative, spontaneous solutions.
So why stress, worry or catastrophize? Beyond your personal mind is a larger-than-life universal intelligence poised to inform, guide and support you. Quiet down and take things as they come. You can only deal with anything in the present moment. You’ll know what to do when you need to know, it’s how your mind works best.