Why is it that I think that worrying about something will affect the circumstances of the thing I’m worrying about?
It’s as though the more I worry about it, the more I think I can push the situation to go the way I want.
My siblings and I talk a lot about worrying and why we worry. Like A LOT. As in a couple of times a week.
It’s a good thing I come from a family of six children so we can rotate our calls to each other and no one ends up being burnt out from the constant chatter of one person over and over. What do we worry about? Besides our children, most of whom are now young adults and tell us not to worry about them, we worry about our wonderful parents who are in their eighties. We all live within a hour or two of where my parents live and only out of love do we wonder if they need more of our help.
To say that my parents are independent and free spirited is an understatement but that is also what makes them so charming and so resistant to our offers of help. I’m sure your family is much the same as ours where aging and illness are issues that are now at the top of the worry list. It’s a bit of a juggling act trying to know when to offer assistance and when to leave it alone and let it work itself out.
Lots of people say that worry is a waste and I suppose that’s true but it doesn’t feel that way when you are actively worrying about people you care about.
Usually worry starts with my thoughts and then as I start thinking about a situation, I unfortunately let myself get ahead to something that hasn’t happened yet and maybe it won’t ever happen but I still think to myself “What if that happens?” Do you do this too? Or am I in a class by myself?
When my thought process starts going round and round, stuck on a thought, I find I have to apply the mental brakes on myself and distract myself with some other activity. If I don’t stop thinking about the “what if’s”, then the worrying will affect my mood; as in getting a very intense headache.
At that moment I realize the negative effects of worrying: all that thinking, all that concern, all that energy focused on a certain situation, doesn’t change whether it will happen. Not one little bit. In the meantime, I’ve made myself a an awful wreck. Not. good. at. all.
Just as the repetition of handling the beads on a string of worry beads can be calming and healing so does saying positive affirmations to yourself. Affirmations can help guide you to inner peace. Sometimes I say; “Worry is a waste.” “Worry is a waste.” and other times I repeat “Resist worry. Resist Fear.” or “I am safe.”
Most of the time my affirmations go a long way to making me feel better about whatever is going on and when they don’t I know I can always grab my trusty phone and know that an understanding sibling is just a call away!