The actual thoughts (or images), however alarming they may be, are NOT ‘the problem’. The problem is the PROCESS which is making the thoughts persist in your tired mind. The anxiety cycle.
This thought is being perpetuated just like any other feelings of anxiety.
The thought comes in to your already sensitized and tired mind. It creates intense fear. Because you don’t realise that it is simply part of the fight or flight response you attach a great deal of importance and meaning to it and take it very seriously.
You then either think even MORE (in an attempt to solve the problem) or try to BLOCK the thoughts which increases your focus on the thoughts which increases your anxiety which leads to more thoughts – a cycle of fear.
As always it dies down but then your memory of the experience keeps it ticking over in your mind – you fear that it will return so this increases your ANTICIPATORY ANXIETY.
Not surprisingly it then returns.
You need to understand this CYCLE OF FEAR clearly before you can begin to change it.