John DeMato - NYC Branded Lifestyle Portrait Photographer
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NYC Branded Lifestyle Photographer - Blog

NYC Branded Lifestyle Portrait Photography Blog | Hi, I'm John DeMato, and I collaborate with thought leaders to create powerful, purposeful and authentic images. This is my blog where I talk all about the magic behind the portraits we create.

Hustle the anxiety out of your life

 

Hustle the anxiety out of your life…

 
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…by hustling at something challenging that motives you to be a better person.

 

When I had a full-time job, I often found my mind wandering during the many slow periods at the office, and that would oftentimes escalate into a Defcon 5 proposition.

Why?

My mind would go to really dark places where I would become uncontrollably anxious while catastrophizing a wide variety of extremely unlikely - but likely enough - scenarios in all areas of my life.

I mean, looking back, kudos to the creativity in my mind, but, shame on me for allowing myself to spiral out of control and sabotage my productivity for the day.

One minute, I thought I was dying of a disease, another I was enraged at a perceived slight that never existed, and another, I’d mind-read my colleagues and become freaked out over their “opinions” about a specific situation.

All of these worry thoughts, regardless of how they were inspired, took a huge, physical toll on my body. I would always have soreness everywhere, pain in my back, migraines and overall exhaustion.

For a period of about 2 years, I would go to physical therapy at least once a week - sometimes 3 times - for aches and pains that were caused EXCLUSIVELY by stress.

It was bad - and what’s worse is that these worry thoughts would carry over for days and weeks, and I would be an emotional mess in its wake.  

It was akin to the hangover that would never fucking go away!

I was miserable, resentful, angry, antagonistic, pessimistic - essentially, a real pain in the ass to deal with because of all this stress and anxiety coursing through my body on a minute-by-minute basis and me not being able to self-regulate worth a damn.

But then, I started my own business, and that changed things - well, not at first, that is - it was WAY WORSE at the beginning.

I mean, once I got over the initial, “holy shit, I am out on my own, what the hell am I going to do now, I have no clue...” anxiety that knocked me on my ass even harder than I’d ever known, I noticed a positive change over time.

I noticed that on days that were completely saturated with work and other non-work related, but important, tasks, that I was emotionally and mentally exhausted to hold space for as many worry thoughts as I did for years on end.

I noticed that in this state, I was able to self-regulate my emotions in a way that was unavailable to me previously.

It’s not that the worry over certain things was eliminated, but, it was SIGNIFICANTLY reduced, and it also became easier to challenge these self-defeating thoughts with consistent self-talk that leveraged logic and reason.

Over time, I realized that the biggest challenge that we, as human beings, face is the power of our own mind and the task of re-framing or eliminating worry thoughts that don’t serve us in a way that allows us to show up in the world the way we want.

Although it’s a daily challenge, the best way to combat stress and worry is by engaging in activities that light you up and exert your creative, physical and emotional energies so that your brain doesn’t have the bandwidth to fit in those bullshit, negative thoughts.

Not only does this energy exertion help with self-regulation, but, the positive vibes created through these fulfilling activities build up your positive, emotional reserves that can sustain you through some future tension and stress - think of these “reserves” as a gas tank; you “fill” it up with positive experiences, and when you need to hit the road, you have only a certain amount of gas until you need to fill it up again, and the cycle continues.

Long story short - if you’re in a place in your life where nothing excites you, it’s time to make some scary, but important, decisions and right the ship because we only have one spin on this merry-go-round, folks - make it matter, :)

Can you relate to this story?

PS - For those of you who aren’t in the know, I mail out these blogs 3x a week, and lemme tell you, they’re a real party, so, if you’d like to get in on this, sign up for it here and I’ll throw in a free gift for you, because I care, :)