Von Deutschland: Lately I have been experiencing uncontrollable thoughts, especially at night when I am alone in the silence. They are usually about death or me harming others. I know that I would never do these things, but it worries me that I have such toughts. I want to know what I can do against them, since they are really bothering me and make me feel guilty. I heard it can be due to fears or anxieties. This would fit quite well since I am very afraid of losing the ones I love. Please tell me what I can do about them and if it is normal to have those thoughts.
Thank you very much.
A: Worrying about the people we love is quite normal. Worrying about the worrying, though, can take on a life of its own. What started as a simple worry can grow into an anxiety disorder. I suggest you read about thought-stopping techniques. You can learn to interrupt the disturbing thoughts with a “stop” command and then replace those thoughts with more positive ones. Give it a real effort for a couple of weeks. You may well be able to manage this on your own.
If you find that you can’t learn to redirect your thinking, then you may need the additional support of a counselor. There’s nothing wrong with that. Sometimes people need some coaching to master the technique.
I wish you well.
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 3 Jun 2011
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2011). Uncontrollable Thoughts. Psych Central. Retrieved on March 10, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2011/06/03/uncontrollable-thoughts/