Ooh this one was a biggie for me. Catastrophising. I had an old nursing colleague who said that I could take one problem and split that into ten and then split each of those ten into another ten until I had a pyramid of problems, worries and anxieties. Maybe being a nurse doesn’t help as during your career you get to see the worst possible things happen and you just end up with a jaded view. Who knows.
But I can magnify a problem like a pro. Exaggeration? No, just disaster/risk management in my book 😉 But the thing about this line of thinking is that if you see the problem as SO big it becomes unmanageable; the ‘you can’t eat an elephant in one bite’ approach as Belle would say. You’re also minimising and underestimating your ability to deal with it, like you are looking down a telescope from the wrong end. So I end up paralysed, in analysis paralysis.
Here’s some catastrophising: I must be an alcoholic, and most alcoholics relapse and can’t quit and keep drinking and ruin their lives.
And here’s some minimising: Sobriety is just beyond me, I have no willpower, I’m just a pretty crap person (Almost Alcohol)
So what to do?
- When things do go wrong I try to avoid turning a small problem into a disaster. Mountains out of molehills anyone?
- I search for the evidence. How bad is it really?
- I assess my ability to manage it. Am I really not able to manage it?
- I make a list of things I could try to do
- If all else fails I call in the professionals
Sorry not trying to make light – I couldn’t help myself 😀
So this one has taken some major work on my part. How do you catastrophise around your drinking thinking?