Personal Development
How to Stop Worrying: 11 Steps to Reduce Stress and ...

How to Stop Worrying: 11 Steps to Reduce Stress and ...

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What Causes Worry and How to Overcome It

In 2020, 59% of adults reported a daily sense of worry. Worrying is a natural human emotion, however, when it begins to interfere with your life it's important to identify its root cause and build strategies to stop it. Chronic worrying can be a symptom of anxiety disorders, causing physical symptoms such as insomnia, panic attacks, muscle tension, and stomach pain.

Identifying Causes of Worry

Sometimes worrying can be brought on by life changes such as having a child, divorce, or moving. It can also be stress related, such as due to a workplace environment or toxic leadership. Financial concerns, job loss, and big purchases can also be triggers. Additionally, relationship conflict and physical health issues can cause worry. Even everyday inconveniences can lead to worry.

Strategies to Stop Worrying

If you have the occasional anxious thought, there are many strategies you can use to work through it on your own. Here are a few ideas to help get your worry and stress under control:

  • A stressful work environment: Make changes to your job to make it more manageable. Delegate tasks, take breaks, and talk to your boss about adjusting work hours.
  • Dealing with a toxic leadership: Set boundaries and have honest conversations with your boss. Explore other opportunities if necessary.
  • Life changes such as having a child, divorce, or moving: Reach out to family, friends, or a therapist to work through the changes and identify solutions.
  • Financial challenges, job loss, or big purchases: Pay attention to your budget and explore ways to reduce costs. Speak with a financial advisor about ways to manage your finances.
  • Relationship conflict: Work on resolving the issue or end the relationship and seek healthy bonds elsewhere.
  • Physical health issues or concerns: Talk to your doctor and take preventative measures to keep your body healthy.
  • Everyday inconveniences: Focus on the things you can control and make a list of activities that bring you joy to do each day.
  • Too many obligations: Prioritize what's most important and say no to certain commitments to reduce stress.
  • Lack of self-care practices and hobbies: Make time for yourself and do what makes you happy without feeling guilty.

The Impact of Worry on Health

The destructive nature of worry can have real consequences on our mental, physical, and emotional health. In 2018, over a third of Americans visited a doctor due to stress-related illnesses. Worry and stress can also make it harder to recover from illness.

That's why it's so important to learn how to stop worrying. While it's easy to stay in the cycle of worry, eventually it will take a toll on your health. Taking the time to process the root cause of worrying and implementing strategies to reduce it can help you make positive improvements to your overall well-being.

Signs and Symptoms of Excessive Worry

Excessive worrying can have a major impact on your physical and mental health. Common physical signs that you may be worrying too much include:

  • Headaches
  • Stomach aches
  • Shortness of breath
  • Exhaustion
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Racing heartbeat
  • Trembling or shaky hands
  • Stomach pain
  • Nausea
  • Gastrointestinal problems
  • Sweating more than usual
  • Restlessness
  • Tension
  • Paranoia

Worrying can also trigger a stress response in your body, making it hard to pinpoint the source of your anxiety. This can lead to trouble focusing on day-to-day tasks and cause serious physical and mental health problems over time. Learning how to stop worrying is the key to improving your overall mental health.

Strategies for Stopping Worrying

Stopping worrying is no small feat, but with practice, it can be done. Here are some strategies you can implement to stop worrying and improve your mental health:

  • Mindfulness and Meditation: Worrying can make it hard to focus on anything else. Guided meditation can help clear your mind, refocus your thoughts, and distract you from your worries. Consistent meditation can help you get into a flow state where it's easier to focus.
  • Deep Breathing: Worrying often leads to thinking about the future. Deep breathing can be used to become more focused in the present and reduce physical symptoms.
  • Practice Self-Compassion: Avoid beating yourself up for failures or shortcomings. That will only make it harder to overcome the negative cycle. Self-compassion can help bring greater peace and acceptance.
  • Do a Body Scan: Worrying can cause physical tension. Become aware of where you feel tense and do a body scan to focus on releasing any built-up tension or pain.
  • Share Your Fears with Friends and Family: Talking to someone you trust can make it feel like you're not dealing with something alone. Sharing your fears can be a great stress reducer.
  • Practice Gratitude: Focusing on the good can make letting go of worries easier. Notice the things you're grateful for and gradually start to let your worries go.
  • Keep an Emotions Journal: Writing down what you're feeling and why can help you make sense of your worries and chart your progress.
  • Maintain a Consistent Sleep Schedule: Not getting enough rest can contribute to higher stress levels, making it more difficult to focus. Make sure you're getting enough sleep and create a regular sleep schedule.
  • Focus on What You Can Control: If you're worrying about things you can't change, start making small changes to the things you can control.
  • Exercise More Often: Exercise is an effective stress-reducer. Even if it's just 10 minutes of cardio, you'll feel better after releasing some of your worries.

Instant Worry Relief

Scanning your body is a great way to help you stay in the present moment, feel grounded, and worry less. Start from your toes and slowly move up your body, giving each part your full attention. When you sense tension, focus on breathing into the discomfort and relaxing your body, allowing the tightness to dissipate. You may find that this strategy can help to stop worrying instantly.

Connecting with others can also be useful when worrying. Our worries may seem irrational to us but make perfect sense in our own minds. Talking to a trusted family member or friend can help you keep perspective and reduce stress.

When Stress and Anxiety Become Too Much: How to Stop Worrying for Good

When anxiety, stress, and worry become too much to handle alone, reaching out for help is the best way to learn how to stop worrying once and for all. Taking action and putting the steps in place to conquer anxiety and worry less is the only way to live the life you deserve. If you're ready to take the plunge, the following strategies are here to help.

Talk to a Supportive Person

Talking to a person who is supportive can provide a completely different perspective on a situation, which can be a great way to stop worrying. Having someone to whom you can talk can have a significant impact on your anxiety levels.

Look for the Silver Lining

The power of looking for a silver lining can help you train your brain to be focused on the positives instead of just the negatives. One way to do this is by making a daily habit of expressing gratitude. If you're having difficulty finding something to be grateful for, take a step back and try to find something funny or interesting about the situation. Doing this can quickly change your state of mind and provide an escape from negative thoughts.

Manage Insomnia

Insomnia is a common side effect of chronic worry, and it can make it extremely hard to get enough sleep. Although it may feel like staying up will help you solve your worries, it is usually better to try to get a restorative night's sleep. Without sleep, minor worries can turn into long-term stress and anxiety. Here are a few things that can help you worry less and get some sleep:

  • Do a meditation or mindful exercise before bed.
  • Drink a cup of calming tea.
  • Read a book right before bed.
  • Avoid using electronics at least an hour before bed, as social media is linked to anxiety.
  • Use natural sleep aids such as lavender, melatonin, or essential oils.
  • If you can't stop your mind from worrying, take a moment to journal your thoughts, but give yourself a time limit.

If you still can't get sufficient, quality sleep after trying these strategies, talk to your doctor as it could be a symptom of insomnia, a common sleep disorder.

Take Back Your Life

You don't have to let worrying control your life. Don't hesitate to ask for help when you need it, and remember that worrying won't solve your problems. When you're preparing for an interview, for example, you can take control of the situation by researching the company or the interviewer. However, if you're waiting for results, worrying won't do anything as it is out of your control. In this situation, it is better to focus on what you can control. Yoga is one way to do this, as it can help you stay grounded in the present moment and refocus your attention away from negative thoughts. The physical benefits of yoga can also act as a buffer from chronic worrying, as it is easier to break the cycle when you are in good health and have plenty of energy.

Listen to Music

Listening to music is an effective relaxation method and a powerful way to stop worrying. Put your headphones in and go for a walk, run, or do simple stretches to reduce worry. Doing things that make you feel good can help you take a break from your worries and remind you that you can stop worrying instantly. Additionally, participating in a hobby or activity that you enjoy can be a great way to learn how to stop worrying and take back your life.

When Stress and Anxiety Become Too Much

At the end of the day, you deserve to live the life you love and don't let worry stop you from doing that. If you're struggling with chronic worrying, ask yourself, "What can I control?". Take the time to find out what works best for you to stop worrying instantly, and don't hesitate to get help if you need it.

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The Mind-Body-Soul Connection

An understanding of the mind-body-soul connection is key to unlocking optimal well-being. Here, you'll learn how to better develop and strengthen your own mind, body, and soul in order to live a happier and healthier life.

Unlocking Potential and Creating Impact Through Coaching with Shiken

Shiken is dedicated to helping people live with greater purpose, insight, and performance. We provide comprehensive coaching services designed to help individuals and businesses unlock their potential and create meaningful impact in personal and professional lives. Our platform uses data and technology to match individuals with experienced coaches who can help them set and achieve goals, develop skills, learn new leadership mindsets, and create behavior changes that lead to improved performance and engagement.

At Shiken, we work with businesses of all sizes and are proud of the trust our clients place in us to provide the best coaching solutions for their employees. Additionally, we have a growing collection of case studies that demonstrate the positive outcomes from implementing our solutions.

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