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8 Thoughts That Are Stuck In Anxious People’s Mind Throughout The Day

8 Thoughts That Are Stuck In Anxious People’s Mind Throughout The Day

Have you ever felt anxious? Maybe you had a job interview or an important presentation and it made you nervous. Can you imagine feeling that way all day long, or at least for portions of the day – everyday? This is the burden carried by those of us who suffer from anxiety disorders.

Here’s some of the things we think when we’re anxious. Bear in mind this list is not exhaustive and it is different for every one of us. But these are some common themes.

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1. We Don’t Want to Be Alone

Many of us with anxiety fear being by ourselves. It leaves us in a vulnerable position as we’re then free to worry endlessly. These anxious thoughts can in turn escalate into a full blown panic attack. None of us want to be alone when that happens.

2. We’re Afraid of Messing Up

After some time, anxiety can begin to affect your self-esteem. We start to believe that we are not capable of carrying out tasks that once came so easily to us. Something simple like making dinner for the family can become an enormous feat.

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3. We Hate Our Lives

When we experience chronic illness, we can become desperate. We feel negative about everything and depression often develops for people with anxiety. People who have anxiety with depression get caught in a spiral of negative thinking and need a lot of support to help manage their condition.

4. We Fear Having Panic Attacks

This fear is so real for many of us. Not knowing when the next one is going to strike makes it all the more difficult to manage.

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5. We Avoid Situations and People

Not being able to face people is a stark reality of anxiety. We fear being found out and we fear not being able to take part in the conversation. Sometimes we avoid certain situations like going to the pub or out for dinner. We fear not being able to find a parking space, getting lost, being left on our own – the list is endless. It’s just easier to stay in and read a book.

6. We Think We Are Sick

Worrying about having cancer and other serious illnesses is a common feature in generalized anxiety disorder. Sometimes we can’t be convinced that we are healthy despite medical evidence to prove it.

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7. We’re Afraid of Dying

Most anxious thoughts are completely irrational and are not based in reality in any way. The fear for many of us with anxiety is that death is imminent – we worry for our families who will be left behind and we worry about all we have to do before our time comes.

8. We Worry About Fires

Many of us anxious people spend an inordinate amount of time checking and double checking locks, sockets and light switches. Trying to function on too little sleep is often the result of these obsessive thoughts.

We worry ourselves into knots over things that will probably never happen. We avoid situations that really aren’t a big deal and we isolate ourselves in the process.

But help is at hand. Here are some quick tips to help with anxious thoughts.

  • Leave some time aside each day for worrying – say 15 minutes at 7pm every night. Leave it at that. That is the only time you are allowed to worry.
  • Think in the now as much as you can. We need to be aware of the moment we are living in – this reduces worrying as we are not focusing on the past or the future.
  • Use a gratitude book. Write down three things you are truly grateful for each day.
  • Stand in a power pose (like Wonder Woman – hands on the hips with your legs apart) for  2 minutes to feel more powerful.
  • Exercise, but not alone. Try to bring a friend along to keep you company so your mind is occupied and not wandering into negative places.
  • Try Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. It is excellent for anxiety. It helps us to stop our negative thoughts and replace them with a more positive and rational alternative.

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Last Updated on December 2, 2018

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

When giving a presentation or speech, you have to engage your audience effectively in order to truly get your point across. Unlike a written editorial or newsletter, your speech is fleeting; once you’ve said everything you set out to say, you don’t get a second chance to have your voice heard in that specific arena.

You need to make sure your audience hangs on to every word you say, from your introduction to your wrap-up. You can do so by:

1. Connecting them with each other

Picture your typical rock concert. What’s the first thing the singer says to the crowd after jumping out on stage? “Hello (insert city name here)!” Just acknowledging that he’s coherent enough to know where he is is enough for the audience to go wild and get into the show.

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It makes each individual feel as if they’re a part of something bigger. The same goes for any public speaking event. When an audience hears, “You’re all here because you care deeply about wildlife preservation,” it gives them a sense that they’re not just there to listen, but they’re there to connect with the like-minded people all around them.

2. Connect with their emotions

Speakers always try to get their audience emotionally involved in whatever topic they’re discussing. There are a variety of ways in which to do this, such as using statistics, stories, pictures or videos that really show the importance of the topic at hand.

For example, showing pictures of the aftermath of an accident related to drunk driving will certainly send a specific message to an audience of teenagers and young adults. While doing so might be emotionally nerve-racking to the crowd, it may be necessary to get your point across and engage them fully.

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3. Keep going back to the beginning

Revisit your theme throughout your presentation. Although you should give your audience the credit they deserve and know that they can follow along, linking back to your initial thesis can act as a subconscious reminder of why what you’re currently telling them is important.

On the other hand, if you simply mention your theme or the point of your speech at the beginning and never mention it again, it gives your audience the impression that it’s not really that important.

4. Link to your audience’s motivation

After you’ve acknowledged your audience’s common interests in being present, discuss their motivation for being there. Be specific. Using the previous example, if your audience clearly cares about wildlife preservation, discuss what can be done to help save endangered species’ from extinction.

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Don’t just give them cold, hard facts; use the facts to make a point that they can use to better themselves or the world in some way.

5. Entertain them

While not all speeches or presentations are meant to be entertaining in a comedic way, audiences will become thoroughly engaged in anecdotes that relate to the overall theme of the speech. We discussed appealing to emotions, and that’s exactly what a speaker sets out to do when he tells a story from his past or that of a well-known historical figure.

Speakers usually tell more than one story in order to show that the first one they told isn’t simply an anomaly, and that whatever outcome they’re attempting to prove will consistently reoccur, given certain circumstances.

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6. Appeal to loyalty

Just like the musician mentioning the town he’s playing in will get the audience ready to rock, speakers need to appeal to their audience’s loyalty to their country, company, product or cause. Show them how important it is that they’re present and listening to your speech by making your words hit home to each individual.

In doing so, the members of your audience will feel as if you’re speaking directly to them while you’re addressing the entire crowd.

7. Tell them the benefits of the presentation

Early on in your presentation, you should tell your audience exactly what they’ll learn, and exactly how they’ll learn it. Don’t expect them to listen if they don’t have clear-cut information to listen for. On the other hand, if they know what to listen for, they’ll be more apt to stay engaged throughout your entire presentation so they don’t miss anything.

Featured photo credit: Flickr via farm4.staticflickr.com

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