Tuesday, February 25, 2014

The Problem with Worry

Add to Technorati Favorites  Worry, some of us seem to do it all the time, while others are the masters of their worries. I fall somewhere in between usually. When I get into a worry patch, I really have to get a firm grip on myself and try to snap out of it! Since l believe in the power of language I take away some of the power of worry by using the word concern. Sometimes that still doesn't work.

Here are some of my worries:

An early meeting or flight, I worry if my alarm will go off.
Driving off, I worry if I left something turned on.
Leaving the house with the dryer or dishwasher running I worry will the house catch fire or be flooded.
Tossing all night worried over various things and then of course worrying about not getting enough sleep because I was worrying and not sleeping!
I worry about the weather impacting my plans.
I worry that the noise I hear while not sleeping is from vandals outside my home.
I worry about my work performance.
I worry about my financials.
I worry about my family.
I worry about my friends.
I worry about my health.
I worry that I am becoming obsessed with worry!

My worries are trivial and heart felt. Most of my worries happen when I should be sleeping. I have to turn off my mind. I have to push back the worry thoughts. I tell myself I can worry only during bright daylight hours. Sometimes it works.

Sometimes worry wins and I am exhausted in the morning. Sometimes I have to drive back home and check the appliances. Sometimes a sincere worry is justified but kept in perspective. The problem with worry is there is always something to worry about.

Are there people who never worry? Do they have an inner peace or are they fooling everyone and themselves?

What worries keep you up at night or during the day? Obviously my cat is not worried!


Carol Cassara said...

My mother was a world-class worrier and left me her neurosis when she died. I'm pretty sure that we get worse as we age because there are more possibilties for things to go wrong, AND we know more about life--that crap can happen. I've done a good job in recent years of harnessing a lot of it, but worry does crop up routinely. Especially around physical time.

Patty Chang Anker said...

Hey how did you know what the inside of MY brain sounds like?? I call it my Greek Chorus of Perpetual Doubt - I have to quiet the voices down by shrinking them into little mouse voices. Or imagine they're garbage cluttering my house and put them into the trash. Then think of something good, or do something productive, or help somebody else. Helping other people is really therapeutic - it gets me out of my own stuff like nothing else.

Lois Alter Mark said...

I try not to worry, especially about things I can't control, but as you point out with that list, there are so many things to worry about! I love the photo of your cat. Now, that is peace and contentment and something to aspire to!

Doc Robyn said...

When I worry at night I write down what I'm worrying about (yes I keep a pad and a pen that lights up next to my bed) and then I do what Scarlett O'Hara suggested. I promise myself I will worry about it tomorrow (I have it written down so I won't forget). When tomorrow comes I rarely feel like I need to worry about it.

Jenn said...

My mother is a professional worrier - she will worry about things going on in my life, still, and come up with things that I haven't even thought of!
Needless to say, I'm a bit anxious too.
If something is really eating at me, we play the "what is the worse thing that could happen" game and take it to the point of ridiculousness (like the end of the world) to try to put it in perspective.

I'm trying to learn to let go, but it doesn't come naturally.

Hillary Chybinski said...

Oh yes - the merry go round of worry. It truly can be exhausting, can't it?

Haralee said...

Carol you are right, we see worry behavior as kids and we copy that with-out even realizing it.

Haralee said...

Patty I like the "Greek Chorus of Perpetual Doubt" that is brilliant! Excellent tips I will try, Minnie Mouse voice and garbage!

Haralee said...

Lois, I know the saying 'control the controllable', but it is often difficult. I wish I was more like my cat!

Haralee said...

Thanks Doc Robyn, that is a good tip, and if I can remember where I last saw it, I have a pen with a light that would work! Scarlet wasn't just a pretty face.

Haralee said...

Jen, like Carol, we learn from our parents. I like your end of the world putting into perspective game I will give that a try.

Haralee said...

Hillary, you know it! Worry can keep you up all night long and really for what? So many of the solutions listed here I am going to try!

musingsonmotherhoodmidlife said...

Haralee, I am a born worrier, mainly when I started working (worried about work stuff) and then later when I had my daughter (a whole different set of worries and concerns). I think the intelligent mind is never still:)
Estelle Sobel Erasmus (from Midlife Blvd)

Haralee said...

I like your take on worry Estelle! Thanks.