Intrusive thoughts are really not intrusive at all–they are simply a by-product of where you've been spending your time mentally. They feel intrusive, but they are merely a sign of your current vibration...and your vibration can be remedied.
In this blog post, I'm going to share what causes intrusive thoughts, three processes for what to do when experiencing an intrusive thought and how to create a mindset routine that will alleviate these thoughts to begin with.
Let's get started!
What causes intrusive thoughts?
Intrusive thoughts, which are thoughts you don't want to think and which cause intense fear, anxiety and stress, are always a sign that you have been more focused on things you don't want instead of what you do want.
That sounds almost too simplistic of an answer, but it's true.
When you remember that there is perfect order within the universal laws (gravity, attraction, etcetera) you realize that nothing can just happen out of the blue in your experience. Things outside of your experience can happen, like a loved one dying, but nothing you experience personally is random.
Intrusive thoughts are the by-product of a fearful, worrisome and anxious mindset. It could have been spurred by something traumatic you experienced or it could simply be that you've been dwelling in negativity for a good long while, and intrusive thoughts are now popping into your experience.
When I developed health anxiety a year ago, I had first been consistently dwelling in a place of slight fear and worry. Those thoughts grew in momentum until I manifested a physical symptom, which increased the fearful thoughts.
I then began experiencing "intrusive" thoughts that would send me into an anxiety attack. It was all simply momentum that kept building.
Is it normal to have intrusive thoughts?
While millions upon millions of people experience intrusive thoughts–no, they are not normal. They aren't wrong, but they aren't your natural state of being.
Your inner being is like Will Ferrell from the movie The Elf.
Your natural state is one of love, joy and happiness. When you're experiencing intrusive thoughts, it's a sign that you are out of alignment with your own inner being (your own inner elf!).
You aren't meant to experience intrusive thoughts; that's why they feel so extremely bad. Because no matter how off course you get and no matter how many scary thoughts you entertain, your inner being is always guiding you, like a game of hot and cold.
The "colder" you get from your inner being, the more fearful your thoughts feel. The "hotter" you get to coming closer to your inner being, the better you feel and the more inner peace you experience.
You feel bad when your inner being isn't on board with a thought you're having. Alternatively, you feel lit up and amazing when your inner being agrees with what you're thinking.
So the next time you're having a thought that scares the crap out of you, remember that you are COLD, COLD, COLD. You're so off base from where your inner being is that you feel horrible, not because the thought is true but because it's NOT.
How do I get rid of intrusive thoughts?
Let's start from square one. What do you do when actually experiencing a terrifying, horrific-feeling intrusive thought? Here are three ways I began lightly pivoting my energy and lifting my vibration away from these kinds of thoughts.
1. Gently shift your focus
When you're smack dab in the middle of an intrusive thought, there is honestly not much you can do. It has shown up and paralyzed you with fear, so really anything you do will only feel like strain.
Try to excuse yourself from wherever you are and get to a more private place. Take deep breaths and just try to come into the present moment as best you can.
Look around and observe what you see. Maybe some birds are playing, or your pet is napping, or cars are whizzing by. Just drop "the world" and watch with calm curiosity anything that catches your eye.
If you can, try to bring your awareness into your body. Feel each body part come "alive" as you direct energy to it. You are here, right now.
Rather than fight the thought when it's happening, it's honestly so much more healing to breathe into it and let it pass. By bringing yourself into the present moment, you let go of resistance and the thought doesn't gain momentum.
When you feel off and know that you're dwelling in a lower vibration place, you can meditate to powerfully prevent intrusive thoughts from showing up.
While this probably won't work if you're already in the middle of intrusive thoughts, it's perfect for when you feel yourself headed down that road. So when you can sense that bad feeling thoughts are increasing in your vibration, find a quiet place to meditate.
Twenty minutes is ideal. All you need to do is close your eyes, quiet your mind and focus on a random, steady sound. Water flowing, the heat or air conditioning unit, or simply listen to white noise on an app.
Thoughts will come up and every time they do, just go back to listening to the sound. Try to do this for twenty minutes. There is true magic in meditation–it's like plugging yourself into infinite intelligence and being recharged.
Sometimes I can do this technique even while having an intrusive thought, but this one is also like meditation where it's best to do it before you actually find yourself having a full blown fear thought.
Pick one thing you are appreciating in life right now. It could be that you're breathing, that you are safe, or even something like a sweet memory you have.
Let yourself lean into this good feeling. Think about it for as long as it feels good to do so and then try to think of something else that you're appreciating, or something that makes you feel good when you think about it.
The more seconds you can spend appreciating something, the more momentum will build behind it and the law of attraction will begin sending you more good things to think about.
Appreciation is an extremely powerful way to pivot in the opposite direction of fear and anxiety.
Creating a mindset routine
By creating a mindset routine, you will set yourself up for days that flow with inner peace, hope and excitement.
Anxiety, fear and stress are all the result of giving more attention to unwanted things instead of wanted things, so when you create your mindset routine, you are intentionally reversing your attention to wanted things.
This. Is. SO. Powerful!
Your life will change, your reality will shift and this is when your experiences truly start feeling magical. When you come back into alignment with your inner "elf", who is always joyfully expanding and having fun, you will begin to see everything with new eyes.
1. Morning alignment
I like to pick one thing for the morning that helps to get my mindset on the right track. This will be individual preference but the most important thing is that you have enough love for yourself to take this seriously for your mental well-being.
Your inner elf is waiting to rendezvous with you! Take twenty to thirty minutes each morning to meet up with your inner being so that your entire day can flow ten times easier.
Here are some ideas for what to do during your morning alignment time:
- A morning alignment worksheet (browse all of mine here)
- Twenty minutes of meditation
- Reading from a daily meditation book
- Yoga or any form of exercise
- Writing an appreciation list
- Spending time outdoors (even just sitting outside and observing)
2. Evening recentering
For me, the evening is the best time to help de-stimulate your body's nervous system and mind. It's for easing and releasing everything.
It's also an extremely powerful time to re-wire your subconscious mind before sleeping, which sets up your tomorrow. I love the way Neville Goddard describes this, by saying that you impregnate the subconscious mind before sleep, and it gives birth to your desires in the following days, weeks and months.
Here are some ideas for what to do for your evening re-centering routine (don't do all of them, just pick one or two!):
- Create low-lighting to help the body and mind de-stimulate (salt lamps, string lights, dim bulbs)
- Journal any emotions coming up for you; take note what's behind them
- Doing one or two EFT tapping meditations with the Tapping Solution app (so easy, so powerful)
- Meditate for twenty minutes or do a guided meditation
- Read a few pages from a mindset book
- Spend five to ten minutes visualizing before sleep
- Watch something funny on TV (one of the best relievers of stress!)
Sample daily routine
The key to having a mindset or self-care routine that makes you feel excited is to not overwhelm yourself by wanting to do ALL the things, and to adjust it accordingly to your current needs.
Currently, it's spring time as I write this which means I want to go sit on the porch in the morning and have coffee. In the winter time, I love turning the fire place on in the morning and reading. Everything is very circumstantial and should be taken into consideration when planning out your routine.
As I briefly mentioned a few times, I am coming off the heels of intense health anxiety which means I'm really aware that I need stillness and exercises that calm my mind. Here's my current daily mindset/self-care routine as a sample.
- Drink coffee on porch without checking phone
- Read from a daily meditation book (I love these because they are quick reads and powerfully remind you of the bigger picture in everything; currently reading Pam Grout's A Course in Miracles Experiment...SO good!).
- Clean up living areas, turn off overhead lights, dim lighting everywhere!
- Shower with dim lighting
- One to two EFT tapping meditations if I'm feeling anxious -and/or-
- Watch something funny on tv
- Fall asleep thinking of ten things I'm grateful for and visualizing something I want to manifest
I hope that I've conveyed accurately my belief that intrusive thoughts are nothing more than a signal that it's time to get intentional with your thoughts and feelings.
Everything is a signal, from intrusive thoughts to bad experiences to dis-ease. The more you shrink your own light, the worse you will feel. All it takes is some intention, some hope and some slight pivoting in the direction of subtle relief.
If you can muster that, you can heal your intrusive thoughts.
Thank you for reading, I hope you enjoyed this article and found something to take away with you.
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Jessica is the author of the 7 Day Manifesting Bootcamp Bundle.