How do I stop thinking about death?
Last Updated: 02/04/2022 at 1:12am
Tracy-Kate Teleke, PsyD, M.A., LMFT
Marriage & Family Therapist
I assist adults and couples in CA experiencing relationship challenges and interpersonal struggles including anxiety, depression, and a myriad of other life challenges.
Top Rated Answers
By living in today! See we all are mortals. And its true to its core that the day we are born into this world, the timer of back counting starts. And this period is different for everyone and much of it also depends on how we treat ourselves. Though death is certain and everything has an expiry date, its better to focus on the journey rather than the destination itself! Take cheers, give support, do what your heart says, ask that girl/boy out, get that slim and fit body, travel the world and what not! The only good way to stop thinking about is actually seeing it something that would happen no matter what so not wait for it but live the best till we can.
Memento Mori. Ask yourself why are you thinking about death? Is it because you've experienced a lot of it? Is it because you've had a recent or serious loss? Is it because you feel suicidal? Are you afraid of death and so unable to not think about it? If you are suicidal I would suggest calling a crisis line and asking them about the different ways you can redirect your thoughts. A way I have found that is helpful in many of those situations is to study up on Death positivity. To aquaint oneself with death positive information. There is a group called The order of the Good death that addresses a lot of things about mourning, or fear of death, and gives a lot of information on the subject, and also helps people come to terms with things they may have misgivings about, or fear.
I think you have to keep telling yourself that you were put on earth for a reason, and you most definitely have a purpose. Dying may seem like a solution but in the end, it's your loss, you never got to see the amazing things you accomplished, you never got to celebrate your successes. Try to power through and remember, your not alone. From personal experience, I'm aware it's ignorant to say something like "just power through it" but truly if you put your mind to it, you can do it. It's hard that's for sure, but the result is so beyond worth it, I promise. Remember, if I can do it, so can you.
One way that you can stop focusing on death is to engage your mind in other activities that you have to focus on. Often times distractions from life's issues is the only way that we can get the chatter to stop. Get out take a walk, go shopping, do something fun, go visit a friend but stay safe from Coronavirus. Death is something we all have to do but we don't have to do it today hopefully. Try to just focus on one day at a time, small steps. Practicing Mindfulness is also a good self-help practice to engage in. I do understand your concerns and fears but let's just Live Today.
When I find myself thinking about death, I don't try to fight it. Instead, I try to ask myself why I feel this way. If I can't seem to find an answer, I don't beat myself up about it. It is not my fault I feel this way and it isn't my fault for having these thoughts. It's okay to feel down at times. Sometimes, you just need to let yourself feel in order to move on. I can't control the hardships that the world throws at me, but what I can control is my reaction to the situation.
The better your acceptance regarding death, the lesser it will bother you. Try thinking why you've been having these types of thoughts , and work on that . For example , it could be your anxiety fueling these thoughts , or some previous unprocessed trauma . There might be stuck feelings as well . Also , try identifying your triggers , introspect why the triggers exist , and get help for managing them if the activity which triggers you is essential , for eg driving . Otherwise , removing/preventing those triggers can be helpful in the short term .
I've found that the best way to stop thinking about death is to look towards the future. It is a common symptom of depression to want to just simply be dead, or to look forward to sleeping every night because it is very much an escape from reality. In order to stop this, we must have hope. Hope will power us through whatever it is that we're going through. We must have a reason to get out of bed in the morning, and if you're not quite sure what that reason is yet, keep searching! It will find you. Try everything you can in life!
Sometimes, distractions are are actually good for you. Hop on a call with a friend and start playing a game. You can find any hobbies youre interested or watch a funny youtube video! I know how hard it can be to get that stunned feeling of existential dread and death out of your head, but I also know that most of the times when I look for things to be happy about, then I really do forget about it and end up being happy :) It's a slow process as you can't erase those thoughts from your head forever, but you can make your life a little more bright by finding ways to make yourself feel good.
I found the comment 'when I'm thinking about death or wanting to die I do not want to die. But want a part of myself that I'm struggling with to die.' Maybe it's a helpful thing for you as well. When something dies in our culture it is mostly seen as negative. But it is something beautiful as well. When a caterpillar dies it becomes a butterfly. And a lot of braincells need to die in our youth to give birth to our adult brain. So death is even necessary! Just know that the thinking about death thing is just a surface thing. What is actually underneath it! Underneath is mostly just a desire for more love and growth when analysed well. Try to maybe get to the bottom of your wish and not see the surface death thoughts. More behind it!. Bye and with love.
Death is hard to stop thinking about because it's terrifying. However change your perception about it. Instead of taking on the negative: "DEATH IS COMING, I ONLY HAVE X AMOUNT OF TIME, NOTHING MATTERS", make it positive: "Death is coming but I don't know when, I have all this time to accomplish things, I can experience as much as I want, life has meaning because it doesn't last forever, I'm not alone".If you accept death I think it can help you be a fearless risk taker. Being a fearless risk taker allows you richer and more random experiences in this life. So be fearless towards death. Everyone is going to die, and that's ok. Also watch Soul, that new Disney movie, might make you feel better about death.
i concentrate on all the things in life which have brought me joy, be it family, friends or time spent alone. Also through thinking of all the exciting memories that i have yet to make. life is a gift and i do my best to treasure it. I find something that would make me happy in that moment (usually food), or watching a movie, meditation also helps too!! I also try to distract my mind from those dark thoughts by talking to friends and family. it is very important to talk to someone, someone will always be there for you.
I think the first question and the one I'm more curious about is "Why do you want to stop thinking about death?". —Root processing— I think there could be a variety of reasons one would want to stop. Perhaps you have a fear of death, in which case I'd wonder what you're afraid of and when and why that started. Perhaps it's a trigger, then again I'd wonder, how do you feel when you think about death? Is there anything that caused that? It could also be that you spend a lot of time thinking about it and feel stuck because you can't find an answer. Well, what questions are you asking yourself? What thoughts are you having? How did that start? (When, how, etc.) — I think the first step would be to catch it when you think about it. Acknowledge it. If you're confused, sit with that. Act curiously towards your own mind. https://youtu.be/vhurfjC72Hk [fear of dying, interview with psychiatrist, doctor]
It’s important to live in the now and to try and do things you love. Although death is inevitable, we should always try to live the best life leading up to it. Try new hobbies or meet new people, try to find things that make life good. Living it to the fullest is always really important. If you constantly think about when you die you won’t live it to the fullest, and you’ll regret that someday. To sum up, it’s always important to immerse yourself in things you love to do or try new things, and to surround yourself with positive people, so you can enjoy life. Don’t focus too much on death for now. Hope this helps
Stop thinking about death...that's a hard one. Personally, I do this a lot. It always comes back now and then. I think it depends on the person. For one, you could distract yourself. Learn a new concept, such as something school related. It helps to really indulge yourself into something. If that doesn't work, you have to think. Maybe there isn't a point to life if we're being real. But there isn't a point to death, either. There will be good times. Cherish those and look back on it. Some people don't have a single person to go to. You may be one of those people. I want you to realize who you have, or find someone to care about, and of course to equally care about. Find a reason to stay. Purpose isn't handed to us. You have to create it yourself.
Nobody likes to think about death, if given a choice. But when one does, its when they are going / have gone through something that deeply hurt them as an individual - emotional, physical, financial or otherwise. To stop thinking about death, one needs to move away from that deep emotion. And if one has to do it all by themselves all alone, its exponentially tougher. The most successful or fastest way to get there is, ironically enough, is to remind yourself of exact opposite of death - That is "life". You got to remind yourself why your life is important. It could be for the people that love you or that depend on you. It could be for the beautiful things or experiences that you are yet to achieve or go through. And to do any of that, you got to be alive. Life is universe's largest wonder. And you are lucky to be blessed with this wonder.
Death is something that cannot be prevented. A lot of people say that the moment you are born, your death is also decided. Thus, death can be scary and its normal to be scared. But the question is why worry about something that is beyond our ccontrol? Rather channel your thoughts on things that you can control in your life, to make things better, personal self-growth, etc. Diverting the mind is a practical way. Personally I too get scared when I think about death. However, thinking about something that is not predictable and uncontrollable is not going to make my life situation any better, it's rather gonna make it worse. Accomplish and go for whatever you want to do in your life
I feel like whenever you try to "stop thinking" about something it comes to your mind more often. Maybe shift your perspective? We all think about death often, but the difference is are you paranoid, and is this disturbing your day-to-day life, or is it just a pondering thought. If it is on the more obtrusive side, I would say to try to analyze the situation. What scares you or fascinates you about death? Also, maybe addressing it can help it fade away. If you push it back, you may end up simply suppressing for it to later appear in your life.
It sounds cliché, but doing absolutely anything to occupy your mind can be a great place to start. Have you looked at the 7 cups anxiety guide? It may help you identify ways to calm the anxiety you might be feeling. A really good way to distract yourself for a bit is to try drawing the silliest, stupidest looking thing you possibly can. Another way I've found to be helpful to feel less stuck is to write down your dream life in 20 years, even if it feels like forever away. Find pictures of houses you think are pretty, write about a job you think would make you happy.
Refocus thoughts on making a list in your head about the things you want to live for . If you don’t have any , are there some things you’d like to do in you life , list those down. Tell yourself that you are here for a reason and your life is a gift . You are totally worthwhile and are as important as anyone else , you just have to believe that . Death is so final , are you prepared to die ? God has a plan for you , trust in God , give him your life and he will lead you
When one thinks about death, it may hint upon a few things. However, let me begin by saying, if you ever feel like hurting yourself, the most courageous thing you can do is to reach out to your local suicide prevention hotline. I have personally had a friend threatened to hurt themselves, and I called the hotline on their behalf to see how I could best help them. The men and women who answer those calls are truly blessed and care tremendously. With that addressed, as I initially mentioned, thinking about death can be indicative of multiple things but I'll outline two of them. Number one, there may be a person, job or city that you feel you have outgrown. That thing may be suffocating you- making it hard to wake up, be productive, or to remain positive. I personally was stifled by a job and sought therapy to cope with my unhappiness. Amazingly, once I found the courage to leave the job, I instantly felt lighter. So thinking about death could be indicative of metaphorically something is no longer serving you and should end. Secondly, the world post 2020 and how we live is very different. Many have experienced loss of loved ones, jobs, financial security, mental security and more. I have many loved ones who have re-evaluated the meaning of "living" and their calling in life. Thinking of death could be your minds way of helping you to re-evaluate your goals, day to day actions and the impact you desire to have on this world.
Honestly, once you start thinking about death it doesn't go away. It is an intrusive thought and you can't really do anything about intrusive thoughts. You can, however, control what you do after realizing you are having intrusive thoughts. After realizing you are thinking about death/dying, you could a. do some breathing exercises and clear your thoughts, b. redirect your thoughts to something more positive, c. do something that will distract you from your thoughts, or anything else that you find works best. If you don't know what works best for you, try out different methods for a period of time and record your mental health to see which method(s) suits you.
Hello, thank you for reaching out for support. I would like to urge you to seek out help from a professional. Whether these are intrusive thoughts or not, please seek help. The national suicide hotline number in America is: 800-273-8255, they can assist you best and offer you the proper care and support. It can be difficult to cope with this feeling and it is important to remember that help is always accessible through this number. Intrusive thoughts about death are an indicator of suicidality and should be addressed as early as possible to ensure your safety. Please reach out and care for yourself.
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