How to Redirect Your
Does your brain jump to worst-case scenarios more often than not? Do you find yourself blowing things out of proportion? If you have nothing in particular to worry about, does your brain cook up something for you to worry about? Then you, my friend, could be dealing with catastrophic thinking.
No worries! You’re not alone. I’m definitely prone to putting my catastrophic thinking hat on more often than not, but I’ve gotten much better at recognizing this in myself and redirecting my thoughts. And you can too, with the three approaches I’m going to share with you.
Catastrophic thinking can sabotage your career goals, stand between you and a healthy relationship, and stunt your personal development. But, it doesn’t have to!
You don’t have to let catastrophic thinking run your life. You’ve already taken the first step toward redirecting your thoughts — you’re Deliberately Thinking about your thought patterns right now. Next, you’ll start to notice when these thought patterns start to creep in, and, with practice, you’ll be able to shorten the length of their visits.
So, the next time someone’s running late and you start picturing them in a car wreck; the next time you’re ready to scrap a project because of a tiny mistake no one will ever notice; or the next time you notice that you’re worrying about something that’s clearly insignificant — give one of these approaches a try.
- Flip the script – Accept your thoughts and let them roll on by. Remind yourself that your brain is trying to protect you from a perceived threat. Maybe even say to your thoughts, “Thank you for trying to protect me, but I’ve got this.” The more you interact with your thoughts, the easier it is for them to compound, which will lead to more catastrophic thinking.
- Challenge your brain – Maybe that’s what your brain is trying to tell you — that it wants to be challenged. Pick up your favorite brain teaser, logic puzzle, whatever you want to call it, and redirect that catastrophic thinking. I enjoy numbers and patterns, so I tend to turn to Sudoku, but crosswords, word searches, or a good old-fashioned puzzle will do the trick.
Keep scrolling for my go-to approach to redirect catastrophic thinking.
My Go-To Approach to
Redirect Catastrophic Thinking
#3 – Focus on what you’re grateful for – This approach is so simple, but it really helps me (multiple times a day ?). First, I’ll say to myself, “In this moment, I have everything I need.” Then I’ll reflect on the fact that I’m not worried about where my next meal will come from, I’m not worried about how I’ll make my next house payment, and I have plenty of clean clothes in my closet. I’m good! Reminding yourself of all the things you have helps alleviate a lot of worries and can stop your catastrophic thinking in its tracks.
I hope at least one of these approaches resonates with you and will help you redirect your catastrophic thinking the next time that it hits.
Feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions or would like me to point you in the direction of more tools you can use on your personal development journey. Here’s my email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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And until next time . . . have a THOUGHTFUL day!
Take a screenshot to easily access these 3 approaches for redirecting catastrophic thinking:
- Flip the script – accept your thoughts and let them roll on by
- Challenge your brain – grab your favorite brain teaser
- Focus on what you’re grateful for
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