In today’s world, we encounter many obstacles, but trials are what bring out the best in us. There is so much good to be done in the world, and we make a difference by addressing problems, just as a dentist makes a difference by cleaning dirty teeth rather than cleaning white teeth.
When we experience anxiety, we should transform the external problems that are causing it into an internal opportunity for growth. Adrenaline produced by anxiety should be utilised internally rather than outwardly, where it will be converted into drive. We need to put the adrenaline to work for us, exactly like putting a car into gear rather than leaving it revving in neutral and doing nothing.
Strategies for managing anxiety
We must first recognise that anxiety is adrenaline waiting to be harnessed in a positive way. We have to feel the symptoms of anxiety, then stop worrying in our heads and use that nervous energy in a more peaceful way.
Distraction occurs when we keep flitting between tasks, or between rest and tasks. This is draining and we end up not resting properly or doing a task effectively. Mind-fullness is the best way of responding to distraction because it makes us apply our whole attention to just one task. This is the perfect way of carrying out a task, which will lead to efficiency and effectiveness. While being mindful, predictive attention, which is a part of our brain, will keep bringing up things to do, but if we keep it in check, with time it will get the message, and we will have full focus on that particular task.
A practical way of harnessing adrenaline
There should be some order in whatever we do. We must be at our best in order to give our best. Frustration is a sign that we are trying to solve the wrong problem.
The beginning of every work is the most crucial thing. As Aristotle said, work begun is half done.
Start by getting our minds in the right place so we can do our best.
The golden hour begins with refraining, mindfulness, and challenging ourselves. They are the total summary of cognitive behaviour therapy, which is the main meta-skill we need to become resilient in the face of stress.
We are resilient because we move the challenge from external that takes away energy to internal that gives us energy.
Conservation of energy leads to decay instead of an increase in energy, but spending energy on the right thing gains us energy.
Waking from sleep
We need to The moment the alarm sounds, jump out of bed. It makes the brain more efficient because everything is timed. When we wake in the morning, we should avoid thinking about any task. It will only make the task seem bigger. The phenomenon is what we call “cognitive distortion of sleep.”
Dealing with negative emotions:
Negative emotions like shame, disappointment, rejection, etc. are actually growth waiting to happen; they just don’t tell us how to use them for growth. We need to figure out how to channel these emotions in a way that will lead to growth. For example, shame is a sense of permanent limitation that is about to go public. We should curiously engage it, and figure out how to overcome the limitation. This requires practice, and the good thing is, our brain gets better at anything we practise, be it good or bad.