Video Blog: Bridges to the Future
You do not have to allow uncertainty to dictate your future. In the next few minutes, you’ll be introduced to a way of responding to uncertainty that will allow you to avoid the cycle of negative thinking and build a bridge to your best future.
When you are building a bridge to your future, assess where you are and what you need to survive. Understand that you do have resources. Use the tools that you have. Try and ask yourself the question, how can I be safe, and in so doing, focus on the here and the now, the right now.
What you do to survive does not have to be permanent. It’s okay to reach out for help from healthy sources like friends, family, or even community resources. Once you have confidence that you can survive and you have direction that you want to go, it’s important to take a minute to figure out how to transition from survive to thrive.
Plan first. Bridge-building without planning is to invite hopelessness. Take steps to execute your plan responsibly and use the resources under your control. What is the next right thing you need to do? Just do that and keep doing the next right thing until you arrive at your destination.
Let’s take a moment and understand how your brain works and how you can make it work for you. Anxiety is your body’s natural response to a stressful situation. Your brain signals and an anxiety response to protect you from the storms of life. The more anxiety is focused on and rehearsed, the stronger the anxiety will be. We internalize and are guided by the thoughts that we keep rehearsing. Carefully chosen thoughts and behaviors will impact your emotions positively. These can be chosen as immediate goals.
When you focus on the blocks to your goals, a negative cycle will keep you stuck. Non-goal related thoughts and behaviors are called blocks. When you focus on blocks, negative thinking will lead to negative behavior. Negative behavior will lead to a spiral of negative emotions, which will take you into hopelessness. Once this cycle starts, it is easy for it to repeat.
To break the negative cycle, create bridges to accomplish your goals. When you have positive and goal directed thoughts, this will promote positive and goal directed behaviors. When you engage in positive and goal directed behaviors, it leads to positive emotions. This takes you down a path that leads directly to hope.
So let’s develop an action plan. Plan first, then execute the plan. Focusing on the problem produces fear, anxiety, and helplessness. Focusing on the solution produces hope, calmness, and confidence. It is okay and healthy to reach out for help. Needing help is human. Connecting with other healthy people will increase our own health. Knowing your limitations and accessing help will be a big part of thriving. Resources are available. You do not have to go through this alone. Reach out.