Will we be less anxious/awkward if we just stopped thinking?

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Joe90
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20 Sep 2011, 12:20 pm

I'm not saying this is true, or works completely, but I was thinking, that it is known to be more anxious if you think too much. I'm always having conversations with myself in my head that won't stop. If I have to stand up on a crowded bus, an annoying voice in my head is saying, ''oh, great, we have to stand up, for christ sake why don't they run buses with more seats? I hate stupid people!'' and then that makes me react more and I tend to glare at people because the thoughts in my head are making me. But if I just stood and didn't think at all, just had a blank mind for that period of time, I think I would be more calmer and would take the situation a lot easier. It might not work, but I'm going to try it next time.

Today I was in a shop, and a kid started up a temper tantrum, and voices in my head sighed and said, ''here we go!'', making me roll my eyes in agreement, then my head started filling up with lots of angry thoughts like, ''I hate children!! !'' and so on, and the thoughts got more overwhelming than the sound of the kid did, so I ended up looking all fed up and found myself glaring at the kid. But then suddenly I tried not to think anything at all, and although I can't filter out unwanted sounds, I still let it pass, instead of letting it overwhelm me - and I wasn't in the best of moods, which proves that this can work. It's no good trying these things when you're in an ''on top of the world'' mood, because when a bad day comes, resentment would have built up and you'll lash out more. But anyway - yes, I stopped thinking, and just stood still with a clear head, and it kind of worked. I will try it more often.

Do you think this could work, or not necessarily for everyone? Would it be worth a try? Maybe self-therapy?


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Last edited by Joe90 on 20 Sep 2011, 12:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.

AtticusKane
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20 Sep 2011, 12:31 pm

Yea man it totally works. And not even necessarily stopping thinking, just diverting your thoughts away from the negative. Works for physical pain too. And hiccups.



b9
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20 Sep 2011, 12:45 pm

Quote:
Will we be less anxious/awkward if we just stopped thinking?


i do not talk in terms of "we" because i am not a party in any "we".

i am me, and i will think as i will and i do not care about the consequences. i have progressed further in life than any people who "mind their manners" that i have encountered.

timid people believe that what they think is only a flimsy theory unless it is endorsed by others.

other people's endorsements mean nothing to me. if i think what i think, then i think it because i have reasoned it to be true.

other people hearkening to my mindset does nothing to alter my opinion as to the validity of what i am able to think alone.

so i guess i must say that i can not answer your question.



animalcrackers
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20 Sep 2011, 12:55 pm

I think whether or not it works depends on who you are and what the situation is.

Sometimes not thinking about something works well for making me less anxious....I can't really describe it as an inner dialogue because I don't tend to think in words--but it's sort of like distracting a little kid who's upset, except I'm consciously distracting myself.

In terms of the social awkwardness related to anxiety (or anything else)...if I didn't consciously think about it, I would be more awkward instead of less because I don't naturally think about how other people see me. I've only developed ideas about it based on things that others have explicitly said to me about how I come across or what other people might think if they see me with a certain expression on my face, or see me acting a certain way.



TheBrain
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20 Sep 2011, 1:05 pm

"Turning your brain off" works to an extent, but I don't want to waste time that I could spend working out solutions to problems. I'm more concerned about the things that you're spending your time thinking about. My mind is usually on things like the effect of gravity on light, "hot ice," what the asteroid belt came from, why we have pieces of the earth or mars falling as meteors, not the people around me. I could care less about what the people around me are doing. I think you need to focus more on what you are focused on and less on "turning off your brain."


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Willard
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20 Sep 2011, 1:44 pm

One is always less anxiety prone when you make a conscious decision not to focus on the negative.

Any thought that begins "I hate..." is automatic self induced anxiety. Leads straight to the Dark Side.

Did we learn nothing from Star Wars? :shrug:



IdahoRose
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20 Sep 2011, 2:14 pm

I can't speak for everyone, but I know that if I thought less, my anxiety levels would be reduced to practically nothing. My anxiety is always brought on by this specific thought pattern: a mildly bothersome thing happens, then I imagine what would happen if it got taken a step further, then a step beyond that, and so on and so forth, until my mind arrives at the conclusion of total crisis. I believe this is what people refer to as "making a mountain out of a molehill".



btbnnyr
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20 Sep 2011, 2:24 pm

If the blank mind does not work over longer timescales, like the length of a bus ride, you could try replacing the anxious thoughts with thoughts about your special interests.



abc123
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20 Sep 2011, 2:45 pm

I find my mind is always in overdrive constantly analysing. Sometimes I find it easier to just do something as if I think about it first it will be a long painful drawn out process where I plan through all options and get distracted.