How to Stop Freaking Out

How to Stop Freaking Out

Managing your emotional state is an essential life skill, but works like a Super-Power when you get it nailed. You become UN-flappable.

If you want some tips on how, check out this video…



Hey there! It’s Kylie Ryan from My Mind Coach, Creator of The Coach Alliance, and today I want to talk about how to stop freaking out.

This is most useful for everyone, really, how to handle your emotional stress and stop creating stories and freaking out about various things that go on in the day. This is appropriate for everybody. But, for coaches particularly, it’s something that you can learn and utilize for yourself but then also be able to learn and utilize and pass on to your clients.

I want to talk about four things today, so it’ll be a little bit of a long one – but I’m going to keep it short and to the point. No rambling.


These are the four things that I want to talk about for how to stop freaking out and how to manage your emotional state:
  1. Your belief baseline of who you are as a person and the personal beliefs that you bring into a situation.
  2. Your stress surgency.
  3. The awfulising pattern.
  4. How to discipline your mind.


Here’s a specific situation:

You might text someone that you’re friends with or you send them a message on Facebook messenger. You send them a message and you can see that they’ve seen it – but they haven’t replied. Maybe you sent them a couple of messages and they haven’t replied.

If you don’t discipline your mind, it’s very easy in this kind of world of instant communication to go, “Whoa, what’s wrong? Have I done something wrong? Does this person not like me? Did they misread what I said? Am I being too needy? Am I being annoying?” and go off on this crazy tangent in your mind and freak out about something that might be totally innocuous.

Someone messaged me sometime recently and said, “Hey, I’m really sorry I haven’t gotten back to you.” And I was like, “It’s fine. Dude, it’s fine. Don’t even worry. It’s not a big deal.”

And it made me think about this, that I have really just internalized over years and years and years of coaching this process about not freaking out when things don’t go the way that I might initially hope or choose or want them to go.


1. Belief Baseline

Everything that you perceive is filtered through your beliefs. Everything.

If you believe that you are a worthy, lovable person, then you will filter every incoming piece of information through that belief. If you believe that you are unworthy or that you have to do things in order to get love or attention or care, then you will filter everything through those beliefs.

If you’re freaking out about what people do – maybe someone slammed the door, maybe someone talks to you in a specific tone, maybe someone doesn’t message back in time or doesn’t call – you know, small little daily things that can happen in our daily life that can mean nothing and we can freak out about them.

You’ve got to think to yourself: “What is the belief baseline that I am filtering this particular event through?”


Here’s some of the belief baselines that I have in place that I’ve learnt and worked through. I have these in place so that when events come on to my world, they’re filtered through this:
  • “I’m a good person.”
  • “I have everything I need.” (This comes from an NLP learning presupposition: I have all the resources I need to succeed.)


This is an interesting one in relationships – because a lot of the times the trigger or the freaking out about relationships comes from an underlying feeling that you need something from that person, or that you’re not complete without them or without what they can provide you.

A lot of the freak out happens like, “Gah!”

You’re in some dependent relationship with that person and depending on them for love, or attention, or whatever it is. And so when they don’t give it to you then your body goes, “Ugh! I’m not safe how I am now. I’m not safe in and of myself.”

So there’s this belief that is worth cultivating – however you’d like to cultivate it – that I am whole and complete in myself, I have all the resources I need to succeed in my life and what I’m doing.

These are some baseline beliefs that are really useful to consider.

Do I believe that? Do I believe the opposite? What do I believe about that? Do I believe that I’m whole and complete and that I’m generally a good, likable person, that people like me, that generally people want to be my friend? That type of thing. What are your beliefs about that?

You’ve got to check in on your belief baseline – because if your belief baseline has beliefs like, “I’m needy, people don’t like me,” if you’ve got a past situation with bullying or feeling excluded or abandoned, then every situation that comes through is going to be filtered through that. And so that’s something to work through with a coach or a therapist to sort that out.


2. Stress Surgency

Your surgency is like how much you are moved or become changed by the situation around you, by external forces around you. When you have a high surgency that you’re kind of constantly emotionally up and down like you’re on this little tiny yacht on a giant wave.

If you are moving around a lot and getting very stressed out by things and your external world very strongly influences your internal state, then you need to have a think about building an internal locus of calm and peace and kind of emptying out your stress cup.

I like to think of this little metaphor of a stress cup.

When you’re very stressed out, maybe you have past trauma, maybe you just didn’t get a good night’s sleep last night or for the last five years because you have small children, maybe you’re having a bit of a tough time with your relationship, or maybe you’ve got a mortgage payment overdue, or maybe you’re worried if your job’s secure in the future.

There might be this baseline of chronic stress that’s filled up your stress cup, and so there’s not much space for you to be able to handle other external stressors without freaking out. One little thing might tick you off. Someone doesn’t reply. Someone has a weird voice and you’re suddenly like “Arghhhhh!!!” freaking out.

So we want to systematically reduce the amount of chronic stress that you are just holding in your system.


Think about:

What are all the things that I currently just have a low level of stress of anxiety about?


And work to either reduce those by changing your situation or shift the stress by reframing them. Putting them into a different context, creating a new story around it, so that you can start to come to peace with whatever that situation is.

We want to reduce the stress surgency so your stress cup is empty.

When your stress cup is empty and it’s got space, then outside the wave of life of different things that happen, you can handle that movement while remaining calm, without freaking out.


3. Awfulising

The other one is a meta-program kind of cluster called awfulising. This is where we take one small thing that goes wrong, that we first initially label, “Ooh, this is bad. Someone hasn’t called me back. Someone hasn’t messaged me.” And we say, “Oh my god, this is about me.” We make it personal.


There’s three P’s to awfulizing:
  • Personal
  • Pervasive
  • Permanent


We go, “Oh my god, this thing, it’s all about me. I’m a horrible person. The person doesn’t like me. I’m awful. They’re never going to be my friend again.” You make it personal.

Then you make it pervasive. You take that one challenging thing and go, “This one bad is happening, everything in my life is terrible at this time.”

Then you stretch it out through time and go, “Oh my god, this is terrible. And it’s always going to be terrible and it’s always been terrible.”


Have you ever noticed that kind of awfulising behavior in yourself?


You’ve got to cut that shit out! You’ve got to notice it and stop it in its tracks.

It is a mental strategy that humans use to make a mountain out of a molehill and fill up our stress cup over something tiny that is just not necessary.

When you get into an awfulizing kind of pattern, you need to notice it:
“This is not about me. Not everything in my life is bad and this is not how it will always be. This too shall pass.”

You undo it by unwinding these permanence awfulisations.


4. Disciplining your mind

The other piece is disciplining your mind, not allowing yourself to go through that story and keep repeating that story.

There’s lots of different ways that we can do this to actually discipline your mind and shift your beliefs and shift the way that you think about things. Some of them are processes that I teach in my Coach Alliance training and mastermind. But a great one that’s just kind of freely available that anyone can do is part of the work by Brandon Bays.


It’s a really powerful process of just going:

“Okay, in the moment of projection when I’m feeling stressed… What’s the emotion that I’m feeling? What’s the story that I’m telling myself?”


Because everytime I’m feeling an emotion, it’s related to a picture in my mind and a story that I’m telling myself, whether I’m aware of it or not. And then that creates a cascade of hormonal changes in your body, either positively or negatively.

We can change the way that we feel and the cascade of hormones by changing the mental picture and changing the story that we’re telling ourselves. We’ve got to clear. In order to change it, you’ve got to know what it is.

In that moment of stress or freaking out or projection, we’ve got to go, “Okay, so what am I feeling? Oh, I’m feeling fear, I’m feeling abandoned. I’m feeling stressed, I’m feeling exiled, angry, I’m feeling rage.”

Whatever it is, whether it makes sense to you or not, it is worth getting clear on what the emotion or emotions are. It’s worth journaling it out.

And so then it’s like, “Well, what’s the story that I’m telling myself?”

“Ugh, the story that I’m telling myself is this person hates me and he’s never going to be my friend again and this is all terrible.”

Then, “Oh, okay, is this story true?”

“Hmmm, probably not.”

Probably not, right? Is it really absolutely true? Is it true? Can I be absolutely certain that it’s true? How do I behave and what do I believe when I tell myself this story?

These are just journaling questions that you can work through this.

And then, “Who would I be without this story?”

You could start to go, “Oh, okay, so if I took that story out of my head, that picture out of my head, then it immediately starts to unwind the feeling and the emotional neurochemical cascade.

And so then, “From that place of calmness, what is another possibility that I haven’t considered yet?”

From that place of calm, you can start to create a new story around possibilities, around whatever that behavior is, so that you can come back into peace and balance and then just move on with your life.

If someone has done something – maybe it’s malicious, maybe it’s unintentional, maybe you’re just making a mountain out of a molehill – but you have all the resources you need. If someone’s not gotten back to you, you don’t need them to get back to you to get on with your life. Just get on with your life.

Deal with the emotions, deal with whatever story comes up – if that’s what’s happening – and then move on.

Bring yourself back to your values, what is most important to you, and start to move your hands and feet, take action towards something that is important to you. Go gardening, go for a swim, talk to your kids, do some work, whatever it is that is meaningful to you that will help you to shift your state by doing something different.


We’ve got four things that I was talking about today…

  1. Check the belief baseline.
  2. Check your stress surgency, your stress cup.
  3. Make sure you’re not awfulising.
  4. Discipline your mind.

Those are some strategies that I use and some things to be aware of when you or your clients are making mountains out of molehills.


The Coach Crucible

If you like this kind of tip and you want to have more skill and more precision in the way that you support your clients transform, then I would love you to consider coming over and joining us in my free group, The Coach Crucible, for people who help people transform.

Whether you call yourself a coach, or a healer, or a mystic or a transformer, or a facilitator, whatever you call yourself – to the general public we’re coaches – I would love to welcome you into The Coach Crucible if you would like to have a chat about other ways that you can support your clients to transform. It’s for professional growth and also your growth as a leader, how you can step into your luminary leadership and really make a stand for the causes and the mission that is your mission.

Your mission is waiting to unfold inside you – and it doesn’t get a chance to if you’re busy freaking out over silly things. Your mission really needs you to step up.

My mission is to help you to unleash your mission and step into your luminary leadership and technical precision as a coach so that you can really deliver on the results that you say you can. I would love to see you there. Thanks for joining me.

I hope this has been useful. What was the most useful awareness for you from this? One, two, three or four? Let me know in the comments below.

Kylie x

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