A very common question anxiety sufferers ask themselves is “Why?”. Why do I feel like that? Why me? Why can’t I be more normal? ?
“Why” is a dangerous question when you’re stuck! “Why” does nothing and leaves you where you are. Worse, your brain will always attempt to answer your questions, so be careful what you ask. Ask yourself why you feel scared and your brain will work hard to find an answer for why you should be! “Why” keeps you stuck. “Why” assigns blame. “Why” gets nothing done.
Imagine you come across an accident and you’re the first person there. Do you spend your time wondering why the person crashed their car into the tree? I hope not. Instead, you take action, even if the action is simply calling 999, or checking on the injured party if you are able to do so. Let the police or the insurance worry about the “why”. The same thing applies here. You can look back at your anxiety disorder and analyse it once you’re in a better place.
There are 2 magic questions you can use instead:
?· What do I want?
?· How do I get it?
There’s also the variant “Where do I want to go? How do I get there?”
?“What do I want?” primes your brain to look forward and helps you move on. You might not know right now what you want but it’s fine. Your brain, being an answer-making machine, will come up with an answer if you give it enough time. It will simmer in the back of your mind until a clear goal pops to your mind, seemingly out of nowhere.
? Once you have your target, “how do I get it/there?” helps you act toward it. Again, the answer might not be instant. Subconsciously, you’ll be on the lookout for tools, resources and opportunities that will help you on your new quest. Your brain will scan around and will assess everything it sees and hear with that goal in mind. That Facebook post, that newspaper article or that random ad that would normally have been missed, will jump out at you. The comment of a friend about someone being involved in “that thing” will spike your interest and you will ask for more information. You will soon start to make your own luck, simply by looking at all the relevant opportunities. A lot of people miss out on opportunities because they don’t know what they want, or they stopped looking out for them.
“What do I want?” sets your GPS navigation system; “How do I get it?” forces your brain to calculate the route.
This set of questions is very useful whenever you’re stuck, no matter how important or trivial the subject matter is. It can apply for your career choice, what you want out of a relationship, what you want out of life, or simply what you want for dinner.
So… what do you want? ?