In this week’s Success Newsletter, I would like to offer 12 strategies to help you to overcome the present fear and anxiety over the economy.
First a quick update:
· Soul mates – fact or a dangerous myth? I am giving an interview on the myths and concepts of soul mates: “Single Again! Now What?” Internet Radio Show- www.SingleAgainNowWhatRadio.com. To listen to the live show or ask questions, call 347-215-6997 on Wednesday February 18, 2009 at 6 PM EST. If you cannot make it, I will have the recorded version available next week.
Now, let’s talk about twelve ways to overcome the current pervading fear and anxiety.
Recently, I gave an interview to Harrison Klein for The Masters Gathering – a collection of recognized success masters offering insights and advice regarding success and happiness. (http://www.themastersgathering.com/?11226 It will be posted next week. During the interview I clarified the difference between positive thinking and solution-oriented thinking.
Positive thinking is often closer to denial than it is to reality or problem solving.
For example, John has just been in a car accident and is lying on the side of the road bleeding and injured. We cannot ignore his physical state or pain and simply say, “Smile, don’t worry, be happy.” We need to acknowledge the severity of the situation in order to be able to offer help and provide the solution – in this case the urgent medical help. We can still remain calm and hopeful but we must take action – immediate action. The attitude can be positive but it must be solution-oriented, backed with action.
The same applies to the situation in which so many of us presently find ourselves: real challenges to cover bills and in some cases survive. Yes, we need to be hopeful and positive but we must also take action to get the results we want. But is that all that is required?
Some people argue that the greatest anti-dote to fear is action, but is that true?
When you are scared and you run away, you are taking action but that may not be the appropriate response when John is lying at the side of the road bleeding and in need of urgent medical care. Accordingly, the type of action you take is obviously critical to the result and solution. In this case, you might need to run, get someone to help you stop the bleeding or call for an ambulance.
Purposeful action is the key.
But is action all that is required to overcome the fear and anxiety and uncertainty regarding the economy and the future?
We must first understand what fear is: the anticipation of pain – set in the future. In other words, fear does not exist – it is not tangible. It is a thought whose effects are very real – it can paralyze us or move us to action.
I have explained in detail in other newsletters “The Worry Buster Technique”: Identifying what is creating the worry or fear, establishing what the worst is that can happen should that fear or worry come to pass, accepting that you will handle the worst should it happen and then taking action right now to prevent the worst from happening.
I would like now to add twelve other suggestions to help you through the all-pervading fear of the present; we hear it from our friends and colleagues, we see it on TV and we read about it on the internet.
1. Cut back on the time you devote to watching the news or reading about the economy online otherwise, no matter what your present situation is, your dominant thought will become the bad that you read about it and it will add to your feelings of fear, anxiety and worry
2. Do not watch the news or engage in negative or fearful thoughts in the evening otherwise it will trigger your subconscious mind to focus on those thoughts overnight and it will lead to insomnia
3. Do not eat when you are stressed out otherwise it lead to indigestion and will only leave you feeling heavy, uncomfortable and worse all day long; go for a walk, do some deep breathing and be in a relaxed state before having a meal
4. Do some form of aerobic exercise every day – at least 20 minutes. This releases various endorphins in the body (feel good chemicals), increases your circulation and helps to expend adrenaline which your body creates when you are stressed out. Adrenaline that sits in the body is like a poison. Remember, your body creates the adrenaline so that your muscles and body can move into fast and violent action; you must safely burn that adrenaline.
5. Focus on your breath. In other words, notice when you are feeling stressed or anxious – you will be breathing very shallow, high in the chest. Consciously, slow down and deepen your breathing focusing your breath on your abdomen
6. Do some form or meditation or slow deep breathing daily – preferably first thing in the morning and just before sleep.
7. Become aware of what your dominant thoughts are i.e. what are you thinking and feeling most of the day?
8. Write out a detailed action plan in response to your dominant thoughts and present fears i.e. the worry buster technique or simply budgeting & mapping out your goals and objectives; write a daily action plan that helps you get closer to achieving your goals.
9. Begin the day with a simple gratitude list for anything and everything in your life: if you have a job, be grateful for that; if you are healthy, be grateful for that; if you have someone that loves you, be grateful for him or her; if you have someone that needs you be grateful that you make a difference in someone else’s life
10. If you have lost your job and you are tirelessly hunting for work and feeling despondent, try devoting an hour to do some volunteer work so that you won’t feel useless or worthless and so that you don’t isolate or cut yourself off from the world.
11. Take some time each day to play and enjoy life; remember whatever will happen will happen – and you can choose now how to respond to life
12. Spend more time playing with children and don’t pass your fear onto them – allow their joy and love for life to affect you.
You can also use any of my hypnosis CDs which will relax you, give you positive and empowering suggestions and relieve the anxiety, helping you to focus on what you really want. http://patrickwanis.com/CDs.asp
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I wish you the best and remind you “Believe in yourself -You deserve the best!”
Patrick Wanis Ph.D.
Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert & Clinical Hypnotherapist