Are You Having Catastrophic Thinking?


We live in an extreme world. Right now, there is great conflict, pain, and suffering, all over the globe. It is easy to fall into catastrophic thinking when we are in a state of anxiety, uncertainty, and instability- even when there isn’t much to worry about at the moment. Catastrophic thinking is the obsession over the worst of the worst. You’re not just worried about failing a test, for example, you start worrying about failing school, never getting a job, and ending up homeless on the street. Most often, catastrophic thinking is unrealistic. Anxiety is rarely rational and catastrophic thinking the highest form of irrational thinking. Stories we come up with when we think catastrophically are unlikely to actually happen.

But They Could Happen

We learn to accept that anything is possible. Being warriors of the present and staying mindful of everything, we are grounded and prepared for whatever comes our way. There is always possibility, probability, and potential. Unfortunately, we are not mind readers nor are we prophets. We may have a strong intuition. During episodes of catastrophic thinking, however, that intuition is likely to be a bit skewed if not off entirely.

How To Handle Catastrophic Thinking

Thankfully, catastrophic thinking ends. In the midst of the process, it can be debilitating. Catastrophic thinking can cause more anxiety. In extreme cases, catastrophic thinking can lead to a panic attack, which is rooted in the brain believing it is about to die. Additionally, catastrophic thinking can leave you completely frozen in fear, unable to make a decision or take any kind of action.

The best way to break the pattern of catastrophic thinking is essentially to distract and relax the mind. Try not to judge or criticize the thoughts once you notice them. Instead, simply acknowledge and accept them as what they are. Next, participate in forms of self care which help you to feel the most comfortable. Last, reach out to someone who is in need of help. Doing good for another when we are feeling catastrophic is the perfect remedy.


Refuge Recovery offers a continuum of care through our various Buddhist-inspired treatment programs. Incorporating proven treatment methods with holistic healing and Buddhist philosophy, our program brings men and women suffering from addiction or alcoholism to a spiritual path. we’re here to serve. For more information, please call or text 323-207-0276.

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