5 Strategies for Coping with Intrusive Thoughts and Seeking Help

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Dealing with Intrusive Thoughts: How to Cope

If you’ve ever found yourself lost in a trail of morbid thoughts, unable to shake them off, you’re not alone. Whether it’s imagining our own funerals, thinking about death, or contemplating suicide, it can be a difficult and isolating experience.

It’s not uncommon for such thoughts to pop up unexpectedly, leaving us feeling frightened, powerless, and alone. But talking about such things can help you feel less stuck and more in control.

In this article, we’ll explore some common intrusive thoughts that people experience and ways to cope with them. We’ll discuss different strategies that have worked for people, and hopefully, you’ll come away with a few useful tools to help you deal with your own intrusive thoughts.

Personal Struggles with Thoughts of Death

Frequency of Thoughts

Have you ever caught yourself imagining your own funeral or thinking about your own death? Perhaps you find yourself reflecting on your life’s purpose or what impact you have had on the world.

These thoughts can be quite profound and can take up a lot of mental capacity. You may feel like you’re stuck and are unable to shake off these thoughts.

Gray Zone of Thinking

Have you ever found yourself stuck in a gray zone of thinking? The sort of thinking that makes you feel like you’re on a seesaw – you can’t decide whether you’re alright, or if you need to be worried.

When it comes to thoughts of death, the gray zone of thinking can be particularly unhelpful. It can leave you feeling anxious, nervous, and worried.

Suicidal Thoughts

Perhaps you’ve experienced suicidal thoughts in the past, particularly during puberty or high school. If so, you know that these thoughts can be extremely intrusive and can take over your life.

Suicidal thoughts are often accompanied by feelings of hopelessness and helplessness.

Fear of Death

On the other hand, if you fear death and find yourself unable to turn off your brain, you are not alone. Fear of death is a common fear that many people share.

It’s important to remember, however, that these thoughts do not have to control your life.

Intrusive Thoughts and Depression


Intrusive thoughts can often be triggered by unexpected, negative thoughts. These thoughts can often lead to feelings of depression, especially if they’re persistent or recurring.

If you’re struggling with intrusive thoughts stemming from depression, it’s important to seek help and support.


Intrusive thoughts can lead to feelings of isolation. Often, people feel like they’re trapped in their own minds and can’t communicate their struggles to others.

It’s essential to remember that you’re not alone and that there are people out there who can help.

Ocean Metaphor

When it comes to dealing with intrusive thoughts, many people find that the ocean metaphor can be helpful. Imagine your mind is an ocean – sometimes it’s calm, and the surface is peaceful.

Other times, it can be choppy and tumultuous. Remember, though, that even during a storm, the depths of the ocean remain tranquil and safe.

Coping Strategies

  1. Acknowledge the Thought

    One of the most crucial aspects of dealing with intrusive thoughts is to acknowledge them and accept that they are real.

    Denying them or trying to suppress them can often exacerbate the problem. Imagine the thought as a passing car – you can choose to ignore it or acknowledge it, but it will eventually keep moving.

  2. Practice Mindfulness

    When it comes to intrusive thoughts, mindfulness can be an essential tool.

    Mindfulness is the practice of being present and aware of what’s happening in the moment. Focusing on the sensations of your breath, the sounds around you, or the movements of your body can help you engage in the present moment and experience your thoughts in a more objective and less threatening way.

  3. Talk to Someone

    Talking to someone can be one of the most helpful things you can do when struggling with intrusive thoughts.

    Whether it’s a friend, family member or a mental health professional, having someone to share your thoughts and feelings with can help alleviate the burden and leave you feeling less alone.

  4. Take a Break

    Sometimes, taking a break can be the best thing you can do when dealing with intrusive thoughts. Give yourself permission to take time off from duties, tasks, or obligations that are causing undue stress.

    Spend time doing things that make you happy, whether that’s reading a good book, watching your favorite show, or going for a walk.

  5. Challenge Your Thoughts

    Finally, remember that thoughts are not facts. Just because you’re thinking something doesn’t mean it’s true.

    Challenging your thoughts can help you reframe and redirect your thinking in more productive and healthy ways.


Intrusive thoughts can be a challenging and isolating experience, but it’s essential to remember that support is available and that you’re not alone. By finding healthy coping strategies and reaching out for help when needed, you can learn to manage and cope with intrusive thoughts more effectively.

Remember – thoughts are not facts, and you are in control of your mind.

Feeling Not Alone: The Importance of Seeking Help

Living with intrusive thoughts, depression, and anxiety can be a lonely experience.

You may feel like nobody understands what you’re going through or that you’re the only one dealing with such thoughts. However, it’s important to remember that you’re not alone.

Reaching out for support can help you feel better and give you the tools you need to manage your intrusive thoughts. In this article, we’ll discuss the importance of seeking help when you’re struggling with mental health issues.


Talking about your intrusive thoughts with someone you trust can be one of the most helpful things you can do. Whether it’s a friend, family member, or mental health professional, having someone to listen to your thoughts and feelings can provide you with perspective and comfort.

Sharing your experiences with someone can help you feel less alone and more understood. A therapist can also be a great resource for those who are struggling with intrusive thoughts.

They are trained to help you explore your thoughts and feelings and to provide you with the tools you need to manage your symptoms. In therapy, you’ll have a safe and non-judgmental space to discuss your feelings and concerns.

Fear of Stigma

One of the biggest barriers people face when it comes to seeking help is the fear of being stigmatized. Many people worry that seeking help for mental health issues will cause them to be labeled as “crazy” or “unfit,” or that they will be committed to a mental hospital.

These fears can prevent people from seeking the help they need, which can exacerbate their symptoms and delay their recovery. It’s essential to remember that seeking help for mental health issues is a courageous and important step.

There is no shame in experiencing mental health challenges, and seeking help is a sign of strength, not weakness.

Importance of Seeking Help

One of the most important reasons to seek help when dealing with intrusive thoughts or mental health issues is to get the confirmation that you’re not alone. Often when we experience intrusive thoughts, we might feel ashamed or confused.

Seeking help from loved ones or a mental health professional can help you realize that these thoughts are common and that you’re not “crazy” or “unfit.”

Seeking help can also help you develop a sense of acceptance, honesty, and empowerment. By acknowledging your struggles and seeking help, you’re taking control of your mental health, and you’re taking an important step towards healing and recovery.

When seeking help, it’s important to find someone you trust and feel comfortable with, whether that’s a therapist or a friend. Be honest about your struggles and your feelings, even if they’re difficult to talk about.

Remember that you’re not alone, and that there is no shame in seeking help.


Living with intrusive thoughts, anxiety, and depression can be a challenging and isolating experience, but it’s important to remember that you’re not alone. Seeking help from a therapist or a trusted friend or family member can provide you with the support and tools you need to manage your symptoms and start feeling better.

Remember – seeking help is a sign of strength and courage, and it’s an important step towards healing and recovery. In conclusion, living with intrusive thoughts, depression, and anxiety can be a difficult experience.

However, it’s important to remember that you don’t have to go through it alone. Seeking support, whether from a therapist or a trusted friend or family member, can be an important step towards managing your symptoms and feeling better.

Remember that there is no shame in seeking help and that you’re not alone. With the right tools and support, you can learn to manage your mental health challenges and lead a fulfilling life.

So don’t be afraid to reach out and ask for the help you need.

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