Ive recently had this kind of battle with my hopel

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Belongs to: Therapist reacts to Hope by NF
I’ve recently had this kind of battle with my hopeless side during a university seminar where I made a lot of mistakes in my work and I had to constantly fight the side telling me these mistakes were dooming me to failure with words of hope and comfort. I feel like its the coping mechanisms of ‘preparing for the worst’ turning into instantly thinking the worst will actually happen.

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Hey,

It sounds like you’re really going through a tough time, wrestling with feelings of hopelessness during challenging moments, like your university seminar. I can relate to that pressure and the heavy burden it brings when mistakes happen. It’s common to start preparing for the worst as a way to shield ourselves, but I’ve found that this often leads to expecting the worst more often than not.

In my own experience, I’ve had to actively work on recognizing when I’m slipping into negative predictions. Every time I caught myself assuming the worst, I made a conscious effort to remember times when things didn’t go perfectly, yet still turned out okay. This helped to slowly change my reaction to mistakes from one of fear to seeing them as opportunities to learn and grow.

I also started to shift how I view mistakes overall. Instead of beating myself up over them, I began to see them as natural parts of the learning process. This wasn’t easy, and it took a lot of self-reminders that everyone makes mistakes and that it’s not a reflection of my entire worth or capability.

If you find these feelings overwhelming, it might be helpful to talk to a counselor. I found speaking with someone provided me with more strategies to manage these tough feelings and prevent them from escalating.

Continuing to challenge those hopeless thoughts with ones of hope and comfort is a strong step. Just know that it’s okay to make mistakes—they’re part of how we grow, not markers of failure. I believe in you, and with time, you’ll find your load a little lighter.

Absolutely - sometimes our mind would rather prepare us for the worst as it gives some kind of control over our fears, and an illusion of control over the outcomes of a given situation. You feel anxious, your mind defaults to making you believe that something bad will happen, so you feel like you have to be ready for it. Some would call it anticipatory anxiety, and it’s definitely something that you are not alone dealing with. It sounds like during this moment at the university, your mind was in this space of making you feel like it has to be all or nothing: all perfect, or nothing is right. If you made one mistake in your work, then everything had to be thrown away and you would be a failure. It makes sense to think that way and to catastrophize internally, especially when it’s about what really matters to you.

In what you have shared, it’s really inspiring and strong of you to name the pattern and understand how it works the way you do. Really! Not everyone is capable to have this kind of perspective over their own anxiety. This awareness allows you to understand why you might feel a certain way under specific circumstances, which leaves the door open to be kind to yourself while navigating these fears and stressors. :heart: