Posts Tagged ‘Turning Molehills into Kilimanjaros’

Turning Molehills into Kilimanjaros

In Communication, Griot, Networking, News, Self Improvement on June 22, 2012 at 2:03 pm

She’s always “in her head” like me.

Stop worrying – Yo!
What are you? A wheat packing Virgo?

It was five minutes past her son’s curfew when “Angela” glanced at the clock. When she called her 16-year old son, Derrick, on his cell phone and got his voice mail, Angela’s thoughts went straight to a scary scenario: What if Derrick ran the car off the road and he’s dead? And some looters stole his wallet? And they can’t identify him, so they don’t know to call me? And he hit someone’s car, that person died, too, and the family is going to sue us, so now we’ll be broke and childless?

We can dismiss Angela’s thoughts as crazy–or we can admit that we have all had moments when our imagination spiraled out of control. Psychologists even have a name for it: catastrophize, you may live or work with someone who does.

Although it sounds like a harmless quirk, it can cause a lot of anxiety, wasted energy and drama. A few years back, I gathered some ideas on catastrophizing from a former professor of mine, Karen Reivich, Ph.D., author of The Resilience Factor. I used those ideas to create a four-step plan you can use to rein in your thoughts before — and even after — they nose-dive into negativity.

Let’s begin::

Catch yourself in the act.
When you’re feeling anxious notice what you say to your self. When that thought first hits, ask yourself, “And then what will happen?” Keep asking yourself that question until you unearth your greatest fear. Bingo–that’s your worst-case scenario.

Once you spot your big fear, ask yourself, “Are my thoughts helping me or hurting me right now?”
Forcing yourself to stop and answer the question can help you see the urgency of changing your train of thought.

Snap out of your spiral by imagining the opposite:
What’s the best-case irrational scenario of what’s about to happen? This is actually fun. For example, imagine that your teen is late getting home because he stopped to help a car-accident victim; your son then saved the man’s life; his wife gave your son a lottery ticket to show her gratitude. Lo and behold, he won a million bucks! He[‘ll be home in five minutes with the good news. Irrational? Yes, but much better than the dead-with-no-ID scenario you had a couple of minutes before.

What’s most likely to happen?
You’ve now cleared the way to tell yourself what’s most logical: “My son lost track of time, his cell phone battery went dead, and he’ll be home in a few minutes. Oh, and he’ll be in trouble too.” In fact, that’s exactly what happened in Angela’s real life scenario.

Of course, bad events sometimes befall us, but writer Mark Twain put it best: “I’ve lived through some terrible things in my life– some of which actually happened.” So rather than obsessing over miseries that may never arrive, use that vivid imagination to design a future that’s worth moving toward.

[Ref: Ebony Magazine — by Valorie Burton — A certified personal and executive coach and the founder of The Coaching and Positive Psychology]

I kid Virgo’s; They’re perfectionists and usually attractive on the spot.
Unfortunately, for the Virgo, they tend to worry a lot.

I however am a Leo and I too can worry a great deal.
I’ve been known to build a mountain out of a tiny molehill.

My ability to worry is mine alone, (even when I’m being stealth).
Thus this piece isn’t all about you – but about me and myself.

Don’t be catastrophizer. No need in thinking the worst,
I’m Qui
Hoping to better myself
, for everything that it’s worth.

The stress of “the wild guess” – has got to go!
There’s no need in Turning Molehills into Kilimanjaros.
Think of a new scenario!