For today’s personal reflection, we dig into the true nature of worry. For many of us, worry can be a default response to emotional triggers that coast under the radar of our concious awareness. The true nature of worry is a concious (or subconcious) concession for an unsteady and unsettled soul.
“Worrying is like praying for what you don’t want.”-Jen Sincero
In an effort to conserve mental energy, our brains have what’s called a default mode network (DMN). This is the place in our brains where our default responses to situations and emotional triggers are recorder for future recall.
Our Default Mode Network
If we respond with enough intensity and frequency to a certain stimuli in a specific way, that response becomes an automated program that our DMN stores for rapid recall if similar conditions are met in the future.
When we respond to certain emotional triggers with worry, anxiety, and fear, with enough time, those responses no longer become a suggestion; they become the default response.
Addicted to Negative Emotions?
We have to make a concious decision to be aware of how we respond to emotional triggers and make different decisions for long enough to begin the process of rewiring our brains. This can be challenging, because our bodies can also become addicted to the chemical reactions these negative emotions release into our nervous system.
The process to wean ourselves off of our addiction to these negative emotions and rewire our brains takes time and patience.
The Healing Process…
Start keeping a journal of your feelings/emotions so you can be more aware of the triggers you face and your default response to those triggers.
As you become more conciously aware of your triggers and your emotional response, use a breathing technique to induce a dopamine release in close proximity to your negative stimuli/response. With enough time, your body will become addicted to the positive dopamine bump more than negative cortisol release.
If you’re recognizing that it’s hard for you to induce the dopamine response, add another physical stimulai (see, taste, touch, hear) to your breathing practice.
Grounding Yourself with Your Senses
There’s a reason why your 5 senses are referred to as the gateways to your soul.
An image that generates positive emotions. A smell that you associate with a safe environment. Touching/grasping a stress ball or playing with a fidgit spinner. Popping a mint in your mouth that makes your breathing more refreshing. Playing a jingle or song that illicits a positive response etc.
Confess Postive Affirmations
When you notice that you’re ruminating in a negative way that can reinforce negative thought patterns, hack your awareness by confessing positive affirmations.
Take deep breathes, ground yourself in one of your 5 senses, and speak positive affirmations over yourself and situations.
Just make sure to select a good emotional intention to start your affirmation.
Try beginning your affirmations with, “I’m so happy and gratefull that…”
… I’m in full control of the way I feel about and respond to _______________.
“I’m so happy and grateful that any moment I can strengthen my will and choose to _______________.”
Let me know in the comments below what breathing/grounding techniques work for you. To receive more great content like this directly to your inbox each morning, subscribe below!
I love hearing from you! If you have questions, would just like to say hi, or have content recommendations/would like to share constructive feedback, feel free to reach out to me at email@example.com.
Get new content delivered directly to your inbox.
More Great Content…
A Little Bit About Me…
Hi, my name is Daniel Fortune. I’m a husband to 1, dad to 5, U.S. Army combat veteran, mental health advocate, writer, and public speaker currently residing in the central valley of the sunny state of California. I started the Minding My Own Madness Blog as with a vision to become one of the best personal development and mental health resource blogs. As someone who has battled with combat related PTSD and Bipolar 1 Disorder for 2 decades now, I intimately know the unique struggles people living with a mental illness face. Feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you find yourself in crisis or would just like to say hi. I’m always just a message away.
“You can’t fail if you refuse to quit. Keep fighting the good fight and NEVER lose hope. You’re not alone. There are other people feeling the same way you feel right now. Asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness, it’s a sign of wisdom.”
I had the honor of serving with Fortune overseas. He is a solid guy and our relationship has lasted long after us both leaving the Army. He has helped me get out of dark places multiple times. I’m extremely grateful for his friendship and ability to sense when others are in need. Read his content, ask him questions, and journey well!
— Eric (Friend/Army veteran)
So glad I found this blog! It helped me find the mental health resources I needed and get out of a rough patch. Doesn’t hurt to shoot Daniel a message. He was kind enough to take time out of his busy schedule to respond to me. You won’t regret it. He’s a really cool, down to earth, and knowledgable guy who knows what it’s like to struggle. So grateful for this blog!
Leave a Reply