Don’t Sweat the Simple Things: How to Worry Less
What if things turned out to be this way? What if you bought that new bag instead of that reservation you’ve been saving up for? We all have our reasons to worry, but you can’t seem to stop questioning your decisions or anticipate the bad just waiting to happen.
Although many people may find themselves as overly worried sometimes, factors such as people coming from divorce are more likely to have general anxiety. Overprotective parents also raise worriers as well as parents who may not always be around or don’t raise a child more consistently.
People get worried simply because bad things or events may unfold and end up becoming hyperactive in preventing such things from happening. On the other hand, disaster may also occur even though you are not worried.
One example is a worrier who consistently goes to the doctors for every ache or pain they feel.
A Natural Response
Worrying doesn’t deserve all the hate it’s been given in recent years. It’s normal for people to worry because it is only natural to respond to possible threats and mishaps, so in the end, worrying is still important.
Running into a wild animal in the woods and forgetting your routine home inspections at your new Springville home are all valid reasons to worry; in fact, not worrying at all is a bigger problem in itself. You can consider yourself a person who worries too much if it interferes with your daily activities or limits you.
The good news is, you can consult professional help and even do something about it yourself.
· Start by listing down things that frequently give you worry and determine if it is productive or not to think about such things. Productive worry is something you can fix at the moment, such as making reservations and planning an event ahead. The opposite is something you have no control of and can’t do something about now.
· Getting over unproductive worries requires embracing life’s uncertainties and recognizing your limitations. Uncertainty is not a bad thing and only means not knowing what the future holds. When you accept uncertainty, you won’t have to worry as much and instead focus on the things you can control and enjoy.
· By exposing yourself to the things causing you worry (such as exposure therapy in fear of snakes), it will eventually get boring and let the worries disappear gradually. The same can be said for uncomfortable situations such as public speaking or parties.
· Worried people often have a sense of urgency and need answers the soonest. Instead, focus on what you observe right now and ask yourself how you can make things better at the moment.
· Worriers can be at an advantage when bad things do end up happening, as they are prepared. Even so, keep in mind that things may not always be as bad as they seem.
· Another way to ease your worries is by talking it out. Engage in talk therapy and solve the root causes of some problems you may have by understanding your individual needs and where the worries are connected to.
Allowing Yourself to Worry
Yes, even though you can’t escape worrying too much, you can instead embrace it and schedule it as one of your activities within the day. By setting 30 minutes to worry each day, you can worry about all the problems in that time frame.
If you catch yourself worrying beyond your scheduled time, remind yourself now is not the time. This technique has been shown to reduce anxiety and make you sleep better, as compared to worrying about things that can affect your mental and physical condition at varying times of the day.
You can start setting your own worry schedule (avoid before bedtime) and practice for a week. After two weeks, you may observe changes in how you deal with problems. If your anxiety continues to persist, it may be time to consult professional help.