Today, I am going to discuss Ripping Off the Band-Aid, especially as it pertains to anxiety. I suffer from anxiety, especially when it comes to social situations. I hate the idea of being judged and, in the past, it has kept me from doing a lot of things I knew were good for me or needed to be done. For example, I wouldn’t reach out to meet new people even though I could have used some new friends. I would rarely participate in work meetings, even if I felt I had something valuable to say. I even avoided carpooling because I would have to interact with other kids’ parents. Anxiety can keep you from being the best you. The best thing you can do for anxiety is Rip off the Band-Aid.
What is Ripping Off the Band-Aid?
Put simply, confront your issues. If you have been putting off that difficult conversation with your mother because you know it will be conflictual, that is when it is best to Rip off the Band-Aid You might be thinking, “I’m afraid to do it. I know we are going to get into a huge fight and it is going to create a lot of tension in the family”. Ask yourself an important question, what will happen if you don’t confront the issue? Will it linger and become much more serious? Isn’t some short-term tension worth long-term happiness? It is well established that anxiety will continue to grow if you don’t confront it. Eventually, the anxiety gets to be so great that you don’t want to get anywhere near it. That is why it is important to act quickly. Wait too long and you may have lost your optimal window of opportunity.
What’s the Worst Thing That Could Happen?
It is important to think about the consequences of Ripping Off the Band-Aid. Ask yourself what is the worst possible thing that could happen as a result of you confronting your anxiety? Then ask yourself what is the worst thing that could happen if you don’t. Compare the two. Which is worse? Anxiety is almost always keeping us from doing something that will be better for us in the long run. Once you know what is the worst thing that could happen you can prepare yourself to deal with it. This is easier said than done. Anxiety is a powerful foe. It has been estimated that at least 40% of the world suffers from clinical levels of anxiety at some point in their life. Most people are so afraid to confront anxiety that they would much rather keep the status quo, even though they know it is bad for them and likely to get worse.
I’m So Happy I Did It
The great thing about Ripping Off the Band-Aid is how you feel after you do it. There is a sense of relief because as soon as you do it your anxiety is gone. Ask yourself this question, wouldn’t you rather have acute anxiety for a few minutes or gradually increasing anxiety for days, weeks, months or years? Ripping Off the Band-Aid is highly reinforcing. Along with the reduced anxiety, you get a feeling of achievement for facing down your demons. Because of the positive outcome, you are more likely to do it again in the future. In this way, Ripping Off Band-aid can begin a process of overall reduced anxiety. It gets easier and easier over time.
Short-term pain, long-term gain.
Ripping Off the Band-Aid is going to cause some higher levels of anxiety for a few minutes but the payoff is worth it. It may take some psyching yourself up to go through with it but you will be glad you did. With any form of anxiety, some confrontation is necessary. Doesn’t it make sense to get it over with quickly rather than let it fester?