Usually sensitive, insecure people are considered suspicious. But this quality is inherent in each of us to varying degrees. We all experience anxiety, suspicion, and confusion at times. It’s just that some people don’t attach much importance to these feelings, while others fixate on them. A person may be in a state of background anxiety, which interferes with enjoying life. Despite the fact that outwardly everything is in order with him, he feels constant tension, threat, and distrust and cannot relax in any way. This is how this painful suspiciousness appears.
Suspiciousness – what is it?
In the psychology of anxiety, there is such a thing as suspiciousness. We tend to treat it lightly, brushing it off and assuring ourselves that it will pass. In fact, suspiciousness seriously spoils our lives. It is a state of constant suspicion, incredulity, and fear of what might happen. Excessive anxiety affects the moral and physical condition. Against this background, sleep, appetite, mood, and health in general worsen. Often suspicious people suffer from psychosomatic diseases.
Suspiciousness manifests itself as a person’s inability to relax and let go of the situation. Instead, he continues to wind himself up, increasing the voltage all the time. The negative accumulates and takes root, becoming part of the way of life. From constant self-doubt and in the future, problems with self-esteem begin. Therefore, you can not score on your suspiciousness. If you experience dissatisfaction with yourself, distrust of people, stress, and lack of motivation, then it’s time to work on yourself.
It is important to distinguish suspiciousness from other feelings, such as justified anxiety or a real threat.
To do this, we highlight its common types:
- Anxious anxiety. It often manifests itself as inexplicable anxiety as a result of life’s difficulties and troubles. It can increase or decrease, depending on the situation. To cope with this condition, you need to calm down, think, assess the risks, and decide how to act. The main thing is not to panic, because it is always useless.
- Hypochondria. This is when a healthy person attributes imaginary illnesses to himself. Against this background, neuroses develop, which can be the cause of real diseases. It is not easy to fight hypochondria on your own, so it is better to contact a psychotherapist in time before the condition has reached an extreme stage. It is called “Munchausen’s syndrome”: when a somatic disease becomes valid.
- Paranoia. In this case, a person is overcome by obsessive thoughts that he is being persecuted, watched, or plotted against him. If in reality, nothing threatens him, then this is a suspiciousness that must be learned to cope with.
Causes of Suspicion
Suspiciousness is congenital and acquired. In the first case, this is a trait of your character, possibly transmitted from one of your parents. More often this feature is inherent in women. They are easy to recognize by external signs: asthenic physique, pallor, and nervous movements. But congenital suspiciousness is less common than acquired.
The main reason for our suspiciousness is a traumatic experience experienced in childhood or conscious age. These are psychological traumas, failures, and bullying, which undermine self-confidence and trust in people. We become too demanding of ourselves, often criticize ourselves for little things, and do not give the opportunity to rejoice and have fun.
- Here is an example of suspiciousness: the manager praised you in front of the employees and said that he was proud of the work you had done. But, instead of genuinely rejoicing at your success, you think that he exaggerates or lies.
Many examples can be cited, but there is only one conclusion – suspiciousness interferes with a full life and it is necessary to get rid of it. You can’t waste precious time on suspicions, fears, and stiffness, you need to act immediately. And we’ll start with a little test.
Seek Professional Help
Read and think about the following statements:
- You look at the world pessimistically and think about the future only in terms of the fact that everything will not go according to plan.
- Whatever happens, you prepare for the worst in advance. Better than having a traumatic experience and being disappointed in everyone again.
- Any atypical discomfort or pain in your body alerts you: you get scared and start googling the symptoms, consult with your friends, and make an appointment with your family doctor.
- You think that your colleagues and acquaintances do not respect you and discuss when you do not hear.
- You do not take your successes seriously and doubt whether you deserve praise.
- You have constant background anxiety, even when there are no objective reasons for it.
- You do not consider yourself smart and capable, although your experience suggests otherwise.
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You are suspicious if you agree with at least two statements. Low self-esteem, anxiety, and suspicion prevent you from developing, catching joyful moments and just living freely. If you work on yourself, you can fix everything. What to do, I will tell you further.
Managing and Overcoming Suspicion
There are simple tricks that will help to cope with suspiciousness, to curb this destructive feeling:
- When you are afraid of what might happen, try to calm down, and breathe deeply and evenly. Remember, panic has never helped anyone. Take a notebook, and a pen and write down all the fears that overcome you. Then write down the expected consequences of your fears, and how they will affect your life. And finally, think and write down the decisions that you are able to make in order to avoid negative consequences. If you always have a plan of action, you can feel confident and protected.
- When thinking about what scares you, always analyze the full chain of events. Mentally or aloud, go through all the steps to get to the very essence of your experiences – the root cause. Realizing it, it will no longer be so scary and unpredictable.
- Relieve tension with what you like: watch movies, draw, travel, or communicate with like-minded people. Fill your life with simple, pleasant joys that make you feel safe and comfortable.
- Share your experiences with others. Here it is important not to cross the line when you just dump your problems on another and you feel better for a while. Talk in detail with your mother or a psychologist – a person with experience who knows how to listen and can help with advice.
- Work on self-esteem. A useful practice is not to compare your successes with others. Do everything at your own pace, overcome difficulties on your own terms, and learn to enjoy even small victories. Gradually, positive experiences will accumulate in your memory and this will give you confidence in the future.
What to read
I would like to recommend you a couple of self-help books:
- Jenny Allen, Out of Your Mind. How to Stop the Spirals of Toxic Thoughts”;
- Stephen Gates, How to Become Resilient and Defeat the Inner Dictator.
They will help to understand the problem of suspiciousness more deeply, to quickly find the path to liberation from anxieties and fears. It would also be nice to have a workbook or diary with advice from psychologists and practical tasks that you will be interested in doing every day. Look for one on the net.
Self-improvement is not an easy walk. It takes a lot of time and effort. You have to deal with suspiciousness, which for a long time you considered a tool of self-defense and not a feeling that destroys your life. Listen to advice, to yourself, read good books, and move towards changes. Everything will work out.
What is suspicion?
Suspicion is the feeling of doubt or mistrust towards someone or something, often without concrete evidence.
What are some common signs of suspicion?
Some common signs of suspicion include being overly cautious, questioning others’ motives or intentions, being hyper-vigilant, and being easily triggered by perceived threats.
Can suspicion be harmful?
Yes, suspicion can be harmful when it leads to excessive worry, anxiety, or mistrust in relationships. It can also interfere with daily life and cause significant distress.
How can I manage my suspicion?
Managing suspicion involves identifying the underlying causes and developing strategies to address them. This may involve practicing mindfulness, challenging negative thought patterns, and seeking support from trusted individuals.
Is it normal to feel suspicious at times?
Yes, feeling suspicious at times is a normal human emotion. However, if suspicion becomes excessive or interferes with daily life, it may be helpful to seek professional support.