Uncontrollable thoughts, they are unwanted impulses which arise in our mind due to stress and anxious state. These thoughts are fast, repetitive and they follow a regular sequence around a specific topic.
Uncontrollable thoughts sometimes can be due to a replay of events that happened in the past. These past events replays lead to the generation of anxiety and sadness. Also, the uncontrolled impulses might be from worries regarding the future.
A typical instance – I’m an idiot, why do I have to make the wrong decisions at every point in my life. Now am going to get fired now, I should have accepted the job offer when I was offered 3 months ago. If I lose my job, am going to be broke. How will I support Jane? How am I going to be able to pay for my mother health bills? If I can’t pay is she going to die? Why did I forget to fill the form, I was given a second chance and I messed up.
These thoughts keep replaying like it some kind of loop over and over again. You don’t seem to know how to stop it or get it out of your head. It affects everything around you, leaving you tired, unable to concentrate, ineffective to complete tasks, and have not been able to have a proper sleep.
The fact that a lot of people can’t have uncontrollable thoughts or mental images under their control, makes them feel disturbed or frightened. Because you can’t control these thoughts does not makes you crazy or out of control as most people tend to believe. However, they only show that you have stressed up yourself or probably you are anxious about something/someone.
So what effective ways can save me from these thoughts or mental images? There exist simple task you can easily partake in that helps save you from the loop of uncontrollable thoughts.
1. Cognitive Distance
This method helps put all thoughts in order, our brain is a complex organ and sometimes does things without our permission. It analyses a situation on our behalf and provides us with result that seems true. Often these results are negative which makes us worry or go over the thoughts in a loop.
So, we use cognitive distance to rectify the troubles our brain has placed us in. these have to do with you thinking the other way round i.e positive thinking to calm our mind. An appropriate instance is when you 18 years old son isn’t back and it already past his bedtime, so your brain offers you result such as maybe he is kidnapped or he is in an accident. However, using cognitive distance you say to yourself he might be late because of traffic. This help puts your mind at ease and frees from rumination.
2. Have a Phrase
Therapist help people having these thoughts escape the loops, by helping them find the right mantras, mantras is just a simple phrase. You can repeat them when you these thoughts start, like “All is well”.
3. Change your Focus
Most people rumination is because they think of the past. So why not bring your focus back to the present, you can’t change your past but you still have a shot in the future, so focus on the present and future.
4. Put it on a piece of paper
All you have to do is find a diary, write down all your thoughts well explained. This help tricks the mind that you haven’t let go of that thought but will come back an revisit them. So the loop stops and you can move on to something else.
Most people do always overlook this. It is important as it makes you calm and in control of yourself. Stress puts you in the loop, however, breathing can save you.
Don’t forget to check my article 5 Signs showing you are probably having OCD