Thought Catalog

This Is How To Stop Out-Of-Control Thinking

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Photo provided by Marisa DeMarco
Photo provided by Marisa DeMarco

Do you sometimes feel like you’re trapped inside of a car that someone else is driving? As the passenger, you must put the trust in someone else that they will get you from point “A” to point “B” safely. But what if you still got into the car with reservation, although you knew it wasn’t the right choice? What if you have to make a pit stop, but the driver doesn’t permit it or you must argue until she/he stops the car to let you out? As you may have guessed that “the metaphorical” car that you’re in is your own mind.

There is a part of you that clearly knows what feels good and what doesn’t. You’d like to say, express, and achieve the desires of your heart, yet something holds you back from listening to your intuition and trusting yourself in making a sound decision. Once again, your mind has hijacked your thought process and has taken you from zero to 100 mph. Now, you may find yourself on a mountainous road, at night, in the fog, and going at a deadly speed; without a seatbelt. You know instinctually for your safety and well being you must stop the car, but you can’t. But something happens. It runs out of gas, starts to breakdown from exhaustion, and sooner or later comes to a grinding halt.

The halt is the best part. Now you have no choice but to get out; calming yourself from a terrifying trip and finding your balance to continue your journey by foot; pass by pass. The next time you feel like you’re overtaken by out of control thoughts, it’s up to you to be the responsible driver. You get to decide when it’s time to stop, go, park, get out, and continue the length of the (mental) journey.

Simply tell yourself:

  1. I am safe. (You’re in control).
  2. Put it in neutral. (Bring down the velocity of speeding thoughts.)
  3. Park “that” car (shut off your thoughts and give your mind a rest).
  4. Stop feeding the meter (no sense in wasting precious resources when in fact you’re in a “free
    parking” zone).

By taking ownership of your life’s personal road, you become more self-aware, decisive, and at peace. You realize when it’s time to reflect, when it’s time to take a break, and when it’s time to switch gears. In turn you become the “driver” of your car and have more control to navigate the route in which you choose.

Anticipation is a killer. Therefore, stop anticipating what’s to come as it doesn’t even exist yet. Anxiety lives in the future. Therefore, stop projecting because all that you’re living is now in the present. Obsessive patterns of thinking of the past will only drive you mad. Therefore stop beating yourself up or living traumatic events that have caused you harm for you have survived them and are now safe. When in doubt, stop the racing and breathe. Know that what you’re feeling and thinking now will pass…it will leave just as the way it came. It’s not forever and as soon as you’re ready to let it dissolve, you’ll regain your sense of stability. TC mark

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