Are you a worrier? From the state of the world to our affairs at home, there are seemingly endless reasons to fret. Worry is a natural way to deal with stress, but keeping it at manageable levels is key.
If worry is consuming your life and making it difficult to function, it may be indicative of a more serious disorder such as generalized anxiety or depression – seek guidance from your physician, as cognitive behavioral therapy and other treatments can offer tremendous relief. Even for those with more minor worries, the habit can still have serious consequences to physical and emotional health. Try some of these scientifically-backed principles to manage stress and worry in your life.
- Accept your drive to worry. Some of us worry more than others. Simply accepting the fact that you have these thoughts, rather than trying to banish them, can be therapeutic in itself. A study at the University of Wisconsin at Milwaukee showed that people who try to suppress worries actually experience more distress than those who accept these thoughts.
- Make a list. Putting your worries on paper can help put them in perspective. Take a look and determine which worries are in your control and which aren’t – sometimes there’s a grey area, too. If you can take action to eliminate some of the worries, do so. As for the rest, try to accept the futility of worrying about things that are out of your power.
- Have a good cry. Or, in other words, don’t bottle up your emotions. Crying, on occasion, can be a powerful stress reliever. So can talking about your worries, whether with a professional, a family member, or a friend.
- It’s an ancient practice that’s proven to reduce anxiety levels, even in small amounts.
- In addition to being a distraction from our worries, exercise can boost serotonin levels – those “happy” chemicals – and reduce stress and anxiety levels.
It’s completely normal for humans to worry – sometimes it’s even justified or helpful. But learning to take control of your worries puts you in charge of your productivity, happiness, and health.
Resources:carefree, Self care, worry