Do you also sometimes wish to have a magic wand and with one quick move take away all your worries? I have not found one yet but in this article I will be happy to share with you 2 techniques that help me to worry less.
So how to worry less? The answer is quite simple, focus on the present moment. As simple as it sounds it is not easy to implement with all the distractions we are facing every day.
There are 2 techniques I would like to share with you that help me to stay focused on the present moment and live a happy and full life:
- 5 Second Rule by Mel Robbins
- ”Anti Worry“ jar
5 Second Rule (by Mel Robbins)
Whenever you feel stuck, this rule does the magic for you. All you need to do is to count from 5 to 1, 5-4-3-2-1. The principle is this: counting backwards stops the current thoughts for a moment and gives you the “stop” sign and space you need to divert from thought A (a worrying thought) to the thought B (positive anchor thought). To remind myself about this rule and to train my brain to use it I am wearing a wrist band every day only with these 5 numbers and it works.
If you like to learn about this rule and about amazing work Mel does, please check her website here: https://melrobbins.com/
”Anti Worry“ jar
Do you remember the ”swear jar” which you can see in the films, in some offices or even families? Everytime someone uses a swear word, they put a coin into the jar and money collected is used for a specific purpose. This technique can be also applied when you have the tendency to worry using a cup and a box of paper clips and it works like this: every time you catch yourself worrying, put a paper clip to the jar. This works better when you are more static which means you are either at home or in the car. You can have a few jars if you like to track it down at multiple places. The good thing about this technique is that you do not have to write anything down, you just need to make that small gesture with your hand which requires less mental energy than looking for a notepad. I like using this more manual technique than using my phone for tracking because the phone is full of “surprises” that can lead you away from this act of throwing a paperclip into the jar when you have a worrying thought.
What do you do at the end of the day with the jar? The point is to count paper clips and make a note for example in your journal about how many worries you had. And if you give this technique at least 3 days you will see first of all whether you like it or not but more importantly how many worries you tracked. Just remember that these will not be all the worrying thoughts in your day, the number will show you only those that you catch and track. You will realise that this technique will give your brain a stimulus to focus on the present moment. And as you are focusing more on the present moment will bring you more happiness into your life.
If you are not sure how it is going to work for you, based on my experience it takes practise to recognise the worry quicker in time and to take action. But this is what you want to achieve, acting earlier than later on the worrying thought.
Remember that we cannot change the past and we do not know what will happen in the future. Yes, we can prepare for it but it will happen only with a certain percentage. And for the past, making reflections will certainly help you to move forward.
So the way to a happy and full life lies in the present moment and these two techniques will help you with that, because life is happening not yesterday, not tomorrow but today, in this very present moment, now.
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