Psychologists Explain 10 Ways to Cope with Disturbing Thoughts

Psychologists Explain 10 Ways to Cope with Disturbing Thoughts

disturbing thoughtsHealth

We, humans, are notoriously complicated beings. One minute you’re extremely angry at someone, and the next minute, we feel immense gratitude for them. You may wonder how to deal with your fluctuating disturbing thoughts.

It’s normal to have negative thoughts about your life, family, friends, and work. Depending upon the day, you may feel angry, sad, happy, or excited. You’re a bundle of emotions and thoughts and sometimes challenging to unravel them.

Some factors that may trigger those disturbing thoughts.

  • Anxiety-When you’re anxious, your thoughts can be affected negatively. You may have disturbing dreams related to your anxiousness. Anxiety steals your happiness and fills you with a dread of what’s coming.
  • Stress-Stress at work or home affects your thoughts. Stress disrupts your sleep and makes you feel like you’re not able to cope. Lowering your stress levels or finding ways to relieve stress can improve your thoughts and outlook on life. Exercise, do yoga, or used mindfulness techniques when you’re feeling stressed.
  • Illnesses- Certain illnesses produce negative thinking. One study found patients with heart failure were prone to depression and disruptive thoughts. Cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, and other debilitating diseases affect your feelings.
  • Medications-Certain medications affect your mood and thoughts. If you take medication, check the side effects list to see if your medications could be making you more prone to anxiety or angry feelings.

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If you find that you aren’t able to deal with your thoughts and feelings, talk to your doctor.

Ten ways to cope with disturbing thoughts

So, what are ten ways to cope with disturbing thoughts?

  1. Don’t believe everything you think.

Your mind is tricky. It can convince you that something is real when it’s not. Step back and examine what’s behind your thinking. Did you have an upsetting conversation earlier in the week? Was there something said that’s upsetting you?  Are you letting your mind run wild with the “what ifs” in a situation? Try to separate what’s real from what’s not real. Once you know that, you’re more able to decide how to unravel your thoughts from your emotions.

  1. Not today, disturbing thoughts

Let those disruptive thoughts know who’s in charge. If you have a troubling idea, ask yourself if where it came from and why you thought it. If you had a friend who said that about herself, what would you tell her? Ask yourself if you are blaming yourself or someone else unfairly.



Don’t allow your thoughts to be in charge of you, take control, and root out the reason behind these thoughts. If you’re angry at someone, should you talk with them? Should you forgive them? Look for a positive action rather than giving in to a negative reaction. It makes you in control of your thoughts, rather than your thoughts in control of you.

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  1. Take a vacay from your thoughts.

It’s easy to get caught up in your thoughts and let them steal your time and attention. Pull away from your beliefs, give yourself a break. There are many things you can’t figure out right now.

That’s okay. Tell yourself you’ll think about this issue for only 10 minutes each day, then let it go. This way, you give it a bit of your time instead of allowing it to dominate your mind 24/7.



  1. Don’t compare

Comparing yourself with others is dangerous. The comparison trap never produces excellent results. Either you feel better than everyone else, or you feel inferior to everyone else. Both of these things aren’t accurate. How many times have you heard your kids whine, ”That’s not fair”?  And you probably told them that life isn’t always balanced. So, tell yourself this you’re tempting to compare yourself to others.

  1. Don’t judge others

Avoid judging others’ motives. You can’t read people’s minds. You’re probably won’t ever know why the lady at the grocery store snapped at you. Instead of brooding over it or feeling angry at her, turn your thoughts around. Try assuming the best about people instead of the worst.

What if she’s having a terrible day? What is someone she loved died? Assuming good motives about people instead of bad ones, helps you avoid disturbing judgmental thoughts about people plus it will keep your mind more peaceful and happy.

We all know that bitter, angry person who judges everyone up one side and down the other. They’re no fun to be around. They didn’t wake up one day suddenly bitter and angry. Over time, they started judging people, assuming they knew motives. Eventually, they saw everything in life as unfavorable. It’s sad to see this. Don’t allow yourself to be that person.



  1. Find gratitude

When you have disturbing thoughts, look for the good in them. That may sound crazy,  but even the worst ideas can be seen as something to be used to help you. Maybe you’re feeling angry at your boss for not promoting you. You’d like to yell and scream at him, so he sees how upset you are.

Perhaps the grateful from getting overlooked in that promotion is that you now realize it’s time for a new job.  Or probably, the reason your boss gave for not promoting you has a grain of truth. Maybe you should take evening classes and earn your Master’s Degree so that you won’t get overlooked next promotion. Use your disturbing thoughts to propel you to action, instead of a reaction.

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  1. Talk to a trusted friend.

Friends are great sounding boards. If you have a trusted friend who knows you won’t share your secrets and can listen objectively without judging you, talk to her. Share your frustrations and anger about your ex-husband’s new wife.

Tell her how mad you feel when she is around your kids. Once you’ve gotten all your thoughts off your chest, you’ll feel better. If you want, you can ask your friend to help you sort out your feelings and thoughts. Get her advice or ask her to hold you accountable.

  1. Positive stuff in, positive stuff out

If you are what you eat, could it also be true that you are what you put into your mind? Scientists think this is true. A recent study found that being on social media too much is linked to patterns of anxiety and depression. Limit your use of social media sites, especially those that cause you to feel inadequate or causes you to compare yourself with others.

Find positive literature to read, upbeat music to listen to, or movies that encourage positivity.  The media today loves to tell you about the worst-case scenario. It is possible to be informed without being loaded down with fear.  Choose to follow people who are bringing change to the world instead of just complaining about all the problems.

Put good positive stuff into your mind. You’ll be surprised at the good positive stuff that fills your thoughts and actions.

  1. Change your brain with positivity.

Stay positive even when your thoughts are disturbing. Remember who you are; these thoughts don’t define you. You are more than your thoughts. Studies suggest that a positive outlook doesn’t mean you’re never negative; it says you know how to strike a balance. You don’t get stuck in a negative mindset.

You’re a complicated person. You have your good days and bad days. Relax and find ways to get your upbeat self back on track. Don’t be too hard on yourself about negative thoughts. You’ll find a way to unravel them.

One suggestion is to keep a journal. Write down your thoughts and positive quotes or Bible verses that inspire you not to give up. Over time you’ll be able to look back and see how you’ve regained your positive attitude.

  1. It won’t last forever.

We all have periods of negativity. Whether it’s due to hormonal changes, a bad experience at work, or a physical ailment, it’s a normal part of being human. It won’t last forever, so don’t give up. But if you feel like you’re stuck in disturbing, negative thinking patterns, especially if you’re being tempted to self-harm, seek out counseling right away.  A counselor is trained to listen and help you with these thoughts.

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Final words on coping with disturbing thoughts

Disturbing thoughts can be upsetting and take away the joy in your life. They can also affect yours physically. Over the years, studies have proven there’s a strong link between the health of your body and your mind.  Positive thinking helps your brain make certain chemicals that

  • Reduce your blood pressure
  • Helps reduce the risk of heart disease
  • Strengthens your immune system
  • Lowers stress levels
  • Prevents insomnia
  • Prevents stomach problems like IBS
  • Helps you feel happier and more positive about your life

Who hasn’t had a restless night’s sleep because of troubling thoughts that loom large? Part of being human is dealing with our never-ending emotions and feelings. Hurtful words, being disappointed or overlooked at work, are tempting situations that can lead you to feel angry, cruel, or bitter.

Figuring out what’s real will help you unravel your thoughts as well as resisting the urge to let these them dominate your entire day. Find a way to stay positive.



Keep a journal of your thoughts or talk to a trusted friend to help you gain control of your thoughts. Take control of your thoughts; don’t let them control you. Hopefully, these tools can help you fight your disrupting thoughts, so the next time such views hit you, you’ll say with confidence, “Not today, disturbing thoughts!

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