I’m not a worrier.
I don’t worry about myself so what business do I have writing about worriers?
But, I do have a tendency to be a control freak. And I guess the two are somewhat related.
I need to control my business, or it won’t fly the way I envision.
I need to control my kids, or they may turn into monsters.
I need to control my husband, or he will end up eating McDonalds five days a week, sleep three hours a night, and never get any exercise.
See what I mean?
Worriers worry about what they cannot control.
I can’t control what happens to my business. I can do my best and hope I see promise.
I can’t control my kids and husband. That’s ridiculous. But I can love and educate and, again, hope for the best.
I am who I am, so trying to reason my way out of my emotions probably won’t work. Shhhh. I probably shouldn’t have said that. Now you’re going to worry about the fact that you can’t get yourself to stop worrying, right?
Well don’t. I too could sit here and rattle off all the reasons why it’s dumb to worry. But honestly, that probably won’t help you much.
I can also just tell you flat out to stop worrying. But that’s not going to do much for you either, will it?
It’s like telling a smoker to quit smoking. Or a caffeine junkie to get off the java.
But here’s the thing. Worrying can eventually cause cancer.
Hopefully that was enough to shake your pants off.
Yep. No doubt. It’s bad for your health. Flat out.
But when you’re afflicted with worry, it’s emotional. Not rational. So no darn piece of logic can get you to stop being possessed by this gnarly emotion.
Basically, worrying is a trap. You’re stuck in there, and the only way out (like any emotion spun out of control) is to get to the friggin’ root of the WHY.
Of course! Understanding the WHY will help you solve this 1,000-piece puzzle.
Worrying can keep you up at night and makes you feel like dog doo. Tense and edgy.
But then feeling like a friggin’ nervous wreck only exasperates the word. It’s like you’re heading into a downward spiral.
So why is it so hard to stop it?
All of our anxious thoughts are bound by all the positive and negative thoughts spiraling around in our brain.
We think that if we worry, we are somehow protecting ourselves from a loss of control.
Ever hear “keep your friends close but your enemies closer?” It’s kind of like that.
We think that if we keep an eye on our worry, our loss of control will be less. But what happens? It actually gets worse, right? We worry more!
So, the logic should be that if you don’t want something bad to happen, don’t worry about it!
Because even though we feel worse, most of the things we worry about never end up happening anyway!
So, here are a few tips to get you to stop worrying when you feel stuck in the trenches.
1. Honor What You Feel
You feel what you feel, and there is no point in judging it. Sit with your feelings. Understand your fears. Feel compassion for your fear of the unknown and uncertainty and just accept that you are afraid. It is scary to feel out of control. Trust me. I know. I’m a control freak.
We all feel stupid things and freak out when we don’t need to. But if you can understand and own your fears and feelings without trying to reject your emotions, they will not hold as much power over you as they would if you try to repress or deny them.
Cry. Let it out. Feel it. It will diffuse the worrywart bomb faster than anything else.
2. Accept Uncertainty
When you are not in worry mode, try to cultivate an acceptance practice around the unknown.
Nothing in life is certain. Remember that. So no matter how much you worry about things that have or may have not happened, you simply must relinquish. Stop wasting your time on things you can’t control.
Instead, go for a walk. Tune in with nature. Take a yoga class. Run as fast as you can. Scream like a crazy person. Do whatever you need to do and move on.
3. Write Down Your Worries
When you write down your feelings, it’s a lot easier to see whether they are even rational. This is a great way to recognize whether your worries are valid or if you’re going off the deep end.
I have just given you three simple tricks to calm the worrywart in you. What do you do to tame the beast of worry when it strikes? I would love to hear from you. Please leave your comments below.
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Hayley Hobson is an author, speaker, business coach, yogi, Pilates instructor, and holistic nutritional expert based in Boulder, CO. Her unique and intelligent style promotes strengthening while softening—empowering her clients to heal not only their physical bodies but their hearts and minds as well. To learn more about her nutritional courses, events, and custom programs, visit hayleyhobson.com or follow her on Facebook or Twitter.