Paranoia the tendency to be excessively or irrationally suspicious and untrusting of others is an uncomfortable feeling that some people struggle with daily. Paranoia can be a symptom of mental illnesses including schizophrenia and personality disorders, or an illness in itself called paranoid delusional disorder.
Paranoia can also be the result of excess anxiety, an extremely negative outlook and general stress in life that leads you to expect and fear the worst.
In the case of paranoid delusional disorder (also called delusional disorder), which affects just 0.03 percent of Americans according to the American Psychological Association, mental health professionals are still sorting out the specifics of the condition, and believe many people with paranoia do not seek treatment. However, there are several signs of paranoid delusional disorder, including:
- Experiencing non-bizarre delusions. People with paranoia worry about things that could actually happen in real life, such as being poisoned, infected with a disease, deceived by their spouse, etc.
- Not showing signs of other mental illnesses. People with delusional disorder do not have schizophrenia or other mental illness. In fact, people who experience delusional disorder typically act like everyone else.
Overcoming Paranoia: How to Let the Excess Worry Go
At the heart of paranoia is an intense unfounded fear that something bad is going to happen. This fear, however, is just a feeling that can be let go of just as you can let go of a pencil.
'If you let go of the feeling of paranoia you will feel safer and act smarter as opposed to simply reacting in the same fearful way out of habit. This can have a huge impact on your life if you are open to it,' says Hale Dwoskin, CEO and director of training of Sedona Training Associates.
While we all possess the ability to let go of our negative feelings (think back to when you were a child and you could be having an argument with a friend one second, then be best friends again the next), most of us have forgotten how. The Sedona Method, a scientifically proven tool, can help you to recapture your ability to release paranoia, worries, fears, anxiety and any other negative thoughts that enter your mind.
The Sedona Method consists of a series of questions you ask yourself that lead your awareness to what you are feeling in the moment such as excessive mistrust and gently guide you into the experience of letting go.
'When using The Method, treat the feeling that everyone is out to get you as just a feeling and let it go,' Dwoskin says. 'Even if there actually are people in your life who do not have your best interest at heart, your worrying about it only feeds the discomfort and puts them more in control over you.'
The bottom line is that paranoia only has control over you if you allow it to. Take back control and live a life free of paranoia, fear and worry by learning and using The Sedona Method principles.