I want to talk about catastrophising or worst-case-scenario thinking.
I call the inner critic, the bitch and there’s a Bitch for every emotion or theme in life. So for the worst-case-scenario bitch, the pandemic is causing the most almighty of knicker twists! If you already had a predisposition to letting your Worst-Case-Scenario bitch take over, then I imagine some of your thoughts right now are:
Oh my God I am going to get sick and die and my family will be gutted and never recover from the trauma and I’ll never finish that project for work and I won’t be able to have a funeral because no one can go out and there wont be any coffins left
Oh my God, what if I can’t pay the bills, the power will be turned off, I’ll get taken to court and black listed and i’ll never be able to get a mortgage and i’ll have to use candles forever.
Even if you didn’t have an imagination for Armageddon, it’s likely your mind is serving you up some of these the-end-is-nigh-thoughts because of COVID. It’s just your brain responding to the pandemic with thoughts that are not helpful, because your mind is unmanaged. And by that I mean, you believe your thoughts and act upon them.
When Worst-Case-Scenario bitch takes over, you need a reality check and to look at the problem through a different window. Change your perspective. Question your thoughts, because remember – they are fiction – chick lit in your brain!
So, what if I can’t pay the bills becomes, I have managed to find money when I have been short on cash before because I am resourceful so I will find a way to make it work.
Or I am going to die becomes, the vast majority of people survive this virus.
None of us know what’s going to happen in the future, whether the world is in a perceived crisis or not. And guess what, the only thing certain in life is that you will die. It’s just COVID is making you think about that fact more than normal, and us lot in the West avoid talking about death like the, um plague! sorry.
In my workshops and in one to one sessions I talk about another character in the Cast of Bitches. But this one isn’t a bitch: I call her TFG – the fairy godmother. She’s your voice of inner wisdom, who speaks calmly, rationally and with reason.
So when you’ve slipped into Worst Case Scenario Bitch mode mode, put the brakes on, let the storm of thoughts settle and tune into what’s underneath. That voice of reason. A bit like how there’s always a blue sky under the clouds, there’s always calm at your core when you let things settle and give them space.
Only you can take responsibility for, and look after your mental health. So start now by paying attention to your thoughts and how you speak to yourself. Next time you have a catastrophising thought, challenge it and call upon your inner wisdom to think something more helpful instead.
Until next time, remember your thoughts aren’t real, they are just fiction of the mind. 🙂