Everything I've Learnt Being A Worrier
Worrying has been part of my life for well, forever. I honestly think I might have been born worrying and for a long time, I thought it was completely normal to over analyse and hold onto situations for months upon months. And it’s safe to safe that’s certainly not a normal way to go through life but when you don’t know anything different then that becomes your normal. It wasn’t until I reached my mid-twenties did I realise just how much worrying was effecting my day to day life and this is everything all those years of worrying taught me.
everyone worries about something
I truly used to believe that some people just floated through life without a worry in the world, that they were so easy going that they weren’t possibly worried about anything but obviously that isn’t true. The older I’ve got the more I’ve realised that infact, every single person worries in one way or another but it’s something that not many people like to talk about because it can be an uncomfortable topic. Especially in the UK, we’ve always been told that we just need to get on with things and have a stiff upper lip about whatever we’ve got going on but that’s such an unhealthy way to go through life. It’s such a cliche saying but a worry shared is nearly always a worry halved and we should never feel like we have to deal with everything by ourselves.
WORRYING DOESN’T CHANGE ANYTHING
Anytime I feel worried whether it’s over something tiny or something monumental in my life I have to remind myself that worrying myself sick over it will not change the situation no matter how much my brain would like to tell me otherwise. And when something is happening in your life for the good or the bad then a little worry is natural. I don’t think there is a human out there who doesn’t feel emotional leading up to something and sometimes worrying is a completely rational thing. For example: worrying about an exam or test is to be expected but worrying about things that happened a year ago when you quite literally have no control over what happened isn’t so normal and you can often lose your future self in the past. A good rule that I like to try and live by is ‘will I still be worrying about this in 5 years?’ if the answer is yes then I dig a little deeper into the subject and look if I can change anything but if the answer is no I try as much as I can to let it slide. Letting things go when you're an over-thinker is never easy but so important so you can focus on what is happening in your life right now.
BEING BUSY DOESN’T MEAN YOU WON’T WORRY
Keeping your mind busy is important, I think that rule applies for anyone but being busy doesn’t mean all your worries will automatically disappear as awesome as that would be. I used to believe that I just wasn’t doing enough and that’s why I was so worried all the time and my mind just had too much time to wander but that sadly isn’t the case. You could be the busiest person in the world juggling work, running a home, being a parent and trying to have a social life and you could still find yourself crippled with worry and overthinking every single situation that comes your way. If your mind is wired to be a little more overactive than most you have to learn how to tackle it in whatever way works for you but overthinking something is not a result of not being busy enough.
you can’t live life by the what if's
One of my favourite mental games to play is the what if?’ game which sometimes can be a lot of fun, especially when played with someone else and it can be a great way to use your imagination. But sometimes it can become overwhelming and when you’re a worrier by nature it can become an easy way to keep yourself small and not do anything that you feel passionately about. For me, when I start living my life by the what if’s it’s usually because I’m too scared and don’t quite have the courage to do what I want so if I convince myself that my worst fear what if’s are going to come true then it somehow justifies the worry in some strange way. Life is full of twists and turns and you cannot possibly try and prepare for every eventuality and sometimes you just have to do the things that might scare you and deal with whatever happens when it happens rather than trying to make an action plan for a what-if.
control your controllables
Something that I wasn’t always so willing to accept about myself is that I like having control of certain things in my life. More so that I like routine and structure which isn’t a terrible thing to like especially when you’re own boss. But because I enjoy having control over certain things when I don’t have any control it tends to scare me. Realising that I can’t control everything in my life has been a difficult learning curve as ultimately no-one wants to go through a tough time so trying to do everything I can to avoid anything bad happening is a pointless exercise as life cannot always be like an Instagram highlight reel. Sometimes shitty things happen and we have absolutely no say in them and that’s hard for anyone to deal with. But sometimes we do get a little bit of control over what happens and those are the things that we need to spend our mental energy on.
saying your worries out loud can take away their power
For a long time, I kept my worries deep inside and would never tell anybody that I was worried about anything no matter how big or small it might have been. These days I’ve got a lot better at sharing my worries with the closest people around me and there is something so good about saying your thoughts out loud that seem to make them less scary and takes the power away from them. Talking to people, no matter who it is about your innermost thoughts isn’t the easiest thing to do there is no denying it but it certainly does help and makes things feel a lot easier on your brain. And sometimes you don’t even have to talk to someone else, you can say the things that are on your mind out loud when you’re by yourself and it can often have the same result. I know it’s one of those things that sound absolutely ridiculous but it does help a lot especially when your mind feels like an overwhelming place.