Feeling Unsettled by Unsettling World Events - Blog Post

Feeling Unsettled by Unsettling World Events - Blog Post

Ken Goodman, LCSW

Ken Goodman

Member Since 2009

Ken Goodman, LCSW, treats anxiety and OCD in Los Angeles. He is the author of The Anxiety Solution Series: Your Guide to Overcoming Panic, Worry, Compulsions and Fear, A Step-by-Step Self-help Audio Program, Break Free from Anxiety, a coloring, self-help book for anxiety sufferers, and the Emetophobia Manual, for those who suffer with the fear of vomit.  Ken Goodman is an ADAA board member and Clinical Fellow. Visit Ken's website.

Ken and ADAA

"Prior to joining ADAA I wrote and produced several self-help audio programs including The Anxiety Solution Series, a 12-hour audio course, Stress Free, a compilation of six guided meditations, and The Personal Growth Series, a collection of seven hypnosis sessions. Since becoming a member of  ADAA and being elected to their Board of Directors, I have completed two books: Break Free from Anxiety and The Emetophobia Manual. Although my practice in Los Angeles was focused on treating anxiety disorders, prior to joining ADAA, I did not know other therapists who shared the same specialty.  Attending my first ADAA conference in 2013 changed that. The presentations filled the gaps in my knowledge and I met and become friends with other experts in the field.  The articles I have written and the webinars and videos I have produced for the ADAA website on health anxiety, the fear of driving, and emetophobia, have helped thousands of people around the world and they have generated close to one hundred patients in my private practice.  ADAA is an organization that uniquely benefits anxiety sufferers, therapist, and researchers."

Feeling Unsettled by Unsettling World Events - Blog Post

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It’s easy to feel unsettled when we hear unsettling news on television or social media, particularly when several events happen at once. The combination of Kobe Bryant’s death, the fires in Australia, and the spread of the Corona virus, can trigger an escalation of anxiety or depression for those already in a fragile state. It’s normal to experience an emotional reaction to events such as these but we don’t want them to overwhelm us.  We can prevent stories in the media from hitting us hard emotionally by taking four simple steps. 

Don’t personalize: The stories of the world are not your stories. Keep them at a distance and recognize they are not happening to you. They are sad, tragic, and concerning but they are not impacting your life directly. 

Turn it off: The stories are compelling and the 24-hour news cycle exists for our consumption but that doesn’t mean we have to consume it all the time. Take a break. Don’t watch. Focus on living your life instead.

Don’t dwell: Even if we take a break from watching media it doesn’t mean the stories won’t exist in our mind.  We can choose to stop watching the stories in our imagination similar to turning off a horror movie on television. Like a garden that grows the more we tend to it, the more we focus on our thoughts the more they grow. Each time an unwanted thought pops up, say to yourself, “not going there” and then turn your attention elsewhere. If you tend to dwell in bed, get out of bed before your mind goes to that dark, scary place.

Refuse to catastrophize: It’s easy for the mind to create worst case scenarios particularly when the news focuses on the worst. Remember, the news has to grab our attention for viewership. If we look back over the last several decades, we can identify many scary predictions that did not escalate to catastrophic proportion: Mass starvation in the late 60s. Killer bees from South America in the early 80s. Y2K in 2000. SARS in 2003. Led paint on toys from China in 2007. Maya calendar predicting global catastrophe in December 2012. And brain cancer from cell phones. Don’t amplify the stories. Turn down the volume.

Ken Goodman, LCSW

Ken Goodman

Member Since 2009

Ken Goodman, LCSW, treats anxiety and OCD in Los Angeles. He is the author of The Anxiety Solution Series: Your Guide to Overcoming Panic, Worry, Compulsions and Fear, A Step-by-Step Self-help Audio Program, Break Free from Anxiety, a coloring, self-help book for anxiety sufferers, and the Emetophobia Manual, for those who suffer with the fear of vomit.  Ken Goodman is an ADAA board member and Clinical Fellow. Visit Ken's website.

Ken and ADAA

"Prior to joining ADAA I wrote and produced several self-help audio programs including The Anxiety Solution Series, a 12-hour audio course, Stress Free, a compilation of six guided meditations, and The Personal Growth Series, a collection of seven hypnosis sessions. Since becoming a member of  ADAA and being elected to their Board of Directors, I have completed two books: Break Free from Anxiety and The Emetophobia Manual. Although my practice in Los Angeles was focused on treating anxiety disorders, prior to joining ADAA, I did not know other therapists who shared the same specialty.  Attending my first ADAA conference in 2013 changed that. The presentations filled the gaps in my knowledge and I met and become friends with other experts in the field.  The articles I have written and the webinars and videos I have produced for the ADAA website on health anxiety, the fear of driving, and emetophobia, have helped thousands of people around the world and they have generated close to one hundred patients in my private practice.  ADAA is an organization that uniquely benefits anxiety sufferers, therapist, and researchers."

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