Do you have racing thoughts and anxiety? Do you find yourself constantly over-thinking things? When anxiety takes control of your mind, it is hard to focus on anything else.

Luckily, there are ways to control anxious thoughts. You’ll simply need to practice.


  1. Detach yourself from the troublesome thoughts. Learn to look at your anxious feelings and beliefs from a different perspective.
    • The key is to restructure the way you reflect on things.
    • Your thoughts are not REALITY. When you get an anxious thought, immediately recognize it as a sign of your apprehension and not reality. 
    • Labelling your thoughts properly increases self-awareness and makes it easier to regulate them. It also gives you something else to focus on as an alternative to persistent worry.
  1. Ask yourself questions. Anxiety reflects a hidden fear or something your brain perceives as a danger. When you find yourself overwhelmed with a negative thought, stop and ask yourself these questions:
    • What is the real reason I have this anxious thought? What am I REALLY afraid of? 
    • Is there a REAL danger, or is my mind simply playing games with me?
    • Is the negative outcome I am envisioning likely to happen?
    • How can I stop these thoughts or transform them into positive alternatives?
  1. Consider your thoughts as data. Sometimes it’s helpful to view your thoughts as data and your mind as a data processing centre.
    • Throughout the day, a lot of data will enter your processor. Some of this information can be incorrect and confusing. This is an example of anxious thoughts.
    • You may also interpret the data inaccurately. This means you give permission to the anxious thoughts to take over and control you. You let them grow and aggravate you.
    • As the data processing centre, YOU can decide how to deal with all the information. Remember that you’re in control. This means you can choose to put away or ignore the incorrect data.
    • Also, keep in mind that the brain is intended to detect danger and is highly sensitive to it. You may pick up on things that aren’t even real.
  1. Concentrate on the present. Many fearful thoughts are focused on either the future or the past. You can emancipate yourself from negative thoughts by focusing on the present.
    • Avoid thinking too much about the past or future by interrupting these thoughts. Notice when you’re thinking about the past or the future and bring your thoughts back to the present moment.
    • Sometimes thoughts from former events can make you fearful of the future. Remember, the past doesn’t have to repeat itself. Your past doesn’t define you as a person and you have the power to change the FUTURE.
  1. Take action. Anxious thoughts prevent you from taking action. They keep you trapped in fear and worry. Learn to take action despite being scared.
    • Look for the one thing you can influence positively in the present moment and take action.
    • Taking action can actually reduce the number of anxious thoughts you have daily. It can show you that you’re powerful and that you can make a positive difference in your life, one small step at a time.
  1. Clear out all the unsupportive thoughts. Some thoughts may be accurate, but they aren’t helpful.
    • Learn to distinguish unhelpful thoughts from useful ones.
    • Then, start to filter out unhelpful ones. For instance, if you know that the odds of making a perfect presentation at work are low, but you still have to do it, this is an unhelpful thought. It doesn’t inspire you to do your best.

You can use these tricks to successfully regulate your thinking when you find yourself overwhelmed. If they aren’t enough, consider talking to a therapist for additional help.

Take control your thoughts; don’t let your thoughts take control of your life!

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