How to handle worrisome thoughts by making an exposure exercise (1 minute read)
Today’s post “How to handle worrisome thoughts by making an exposure exercise” continues with how to make an exposure exercise, as in therapy, to handle worrying thoughts in order to reduce anxiety, get more positive feelings, less intense negative feelings and more adaptive behavioural responses.
Note, you only should try this after learning how to calm yourself and if uncertain or feeling fragile together with a licensed psychologist or therapist:
Making an imaginal exposure is done by visualizing and really entering into the worst possible scenario:
Visualise the worst possible scenario, imagine in details how it feels to be in the situation: what you and others around you would think, feel, say and do, and keep asking yourself what is the worst with experiencing this while visualizing, breathing calmly and being relaxed.
Continue until you have visualized all of your imagined worst-case scenarios as they come to mind.
You will likely realize that the worst case, even if hypothetically terrible (it will not likely happen), did not create the kind of reactions you feared, but instead that the anxiety and fear loosened its grip of you.
Recall that if your level of discomfort is 8 or higher, revert to the stress management techniques posted earlier.
More about how to make an imaginal exposure in next post.
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Oxford university: http://solo.bodleian.ox.ac.uk/