ANXIETY AGAIN: How to deal with it?

Emotional Intelligence: Why it can matter more than IQ by Daniel Coleman, a reflection.

Photo by lulia Mihailov on Unsplash.

Are you having a hard time understanding your own emotions?

Isolation? Anxiety? Pessimism? Hopelessness?

The antidote for emotional issues is at the core of the remarkable book of Daniel Coleman, Emotional Intelligence: Why it can matter more than IQ.

Daniel Coleman explains how to deal with your emotional issues to gain a better outlook on life.

As I commit myself to read a book per month, I would like to share with you my 3 reflections on the book:

  1. DON’T THINK TWICE: Use Our Two Minds in Making Life’s Decision
  2. ANXIETY AGAIN: How to deal with it?
  3. What Makes One See The Light At The End Of the Tunnel?

The book suits those who look for answers with their emotional issues. 

Also, the book fits those who watch for emotional storms before they even arise.

“It is when times are good that you gird yourself for tougher times ahead.”

Seneca

ANXIETY AGAIN: How to deal with it?

Don’t you wonder what makes us anxious and how other people can cope with their anxiety better?

Because I do.

At one point in our life, we find ourselves worried—even now, we may be worried about something.

But why?

Emotional Intelligence by Daniel Coleman has answers to these questions.

Our strong tendency to worry comes from excessive mental pre-occupation called rumination. It usually happens whenever we are alone and bored.

The intensity of our worry depends on the thoughts that occupy our minds.

We have bad thoughts and good thoughts—or healthy thoughts and unhealthy thoughts if we like.

These thoughts constitute 2 kinds of rumination: passive rumination and active rumination.

In passive rumination, an anxious person constantly primes his mind with worrisome thoughts. And, the person does not interrupt the flow of negative thoughts with positive ones. This is the reason why a person becomes more anxious.

In active rumination, an anxious person tries to interrupt the negative thoughts with positive. The goal is to yield a positive outcome. If done right, he becomes less anxious.

“Worry is, in a sense, a rehearsal of what might go wrong and how to deal with it; the task of worrying is to come up with positive solutions for life’s perils by anticipating dangers before they arise.”

Thomas Borkovec, a psychologist at Pennsylvania State University.

These two types of rumination show how we can cope with our anxiety better. In order to do that, we need to come up with our positive solutions.

Remember that people have different ways of coping with anxiety that works only to them.

If we are worried about something right now and do not have our ‘personal way’ of dealing with it yet, worry not.

Daniel Coleman’s book has recommendations that we can start with:

  1. Socialize. It is often appealing to people with anxiety to stay at home or stay alone. For some staying alone works. It helps them clear their minds and be in serenity. But more often than not, staying alone can backfire. It can add a sense of loneliness and isolation to their anxiety. If staying alone makes us feel more anxious, then socialize. Socializing means going out to eat, to a movie; in short, doing something with friends or family. (Diane Tice, a psychologist at Case Western Reserve University.)
  1. Distract the thought. As soon as our anxiety is about to sap our energy, distract it by doing something that can energize us. We can play upbeat video games, watch a funny movie, read an uplifting book, or think of an exciting vacation. A note of caution here: choose a good/healthy distraction. (K. S. Dobson: “A Meta-analysis of the efficacy of Cognitive Therapy for Depression”)
  1. Cognitive Reframing. It is to perceive situations in a positive way. We say that “we may have failed now but we can still try again’. Or we can say ‘our insecurities can make us unique’. Cognitive reframing helps us achieve a better outlook on life. (Diane Tice, a psychologist at Case Western Reserve University.)
  1. Engage in easy success. When we are anxious, we usually have a sudden drop in interest to do something. One way to prevent anxious thoughts from flooding is to engage ourselves in easy success. It can be tackling some long-delayed chore around the house or cleaning up our room. Having to accomplish easy success can boost our self-worth. (Diane Tice, a psychologist at Case Western Reserve University.)
  1. Pray. If you’re religious, praying works for all moods, especially depression. (Diane Tice, a psychologist at Case Western Reserve University.) 

We now know what makes us anxious and how we can deal with our anxiety better.

We also have some tips that can come handy once anxiety intrudes on our minds again.

Nobody feels okay all the time. And it is very human to feel anxious at times. 

But remember, our anxiety—with a positive solution—will always come to pass. 


If you find this blog post helpful, share it now with a friend!


Click here to get a copy of Emotional Intelligence: Why it can more than IQ by Daniel Coleman.


My 2020 goal is to read a book per month; share with people what I learn from and feel about the book. For May 2020, the book I read is Emotional Intelligence: Why it can matter more than IQ by Daniel Coleman.

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