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Worry

WHAT IS IT?
A tendency to engage in negative thinking about past, current and future events, problems and difficulties. Worrying typically involves brooding and thinking anxiously about something. This can itself generate more anxiety and worry.

WHAT DO THE EXPERTS SAY?

  • We all worry from time time. It's natural.

  • Typical worry topics are school and work, family and relationships, money and finance, health and wellbeing.

  • For some worry can become a pervasive thinking pattern and become disabling and uncontrollable.

  • Worry is a feature of generalised anxiety. People with anxiety report worrying a lot, sometimes about small miscellaneous things. 

  • Anxiety sufferers find it particularly hard to control their worry. They sometimes become preoccupied by it and can start worrying about worry.

  • Worrying can lead to poor problem solving, negative thinking and low motivation. As a result worriers tend to exhibit a more negative mood. 

WHAT CAN YOU DO ABOUT IT?

  • If you are concerned about anxiety and its effect on your life, talk to your doctor.

  • Therapy can be an effective treatment. For example, CBT or talking therapy will help you to moderate your thinking style replacing negative thoughts with positive ones. You'll be introduced to a number of self-help techniques and tools that will help you rethink the usefulness of worry.

  • Practise self-help. Set aside 30 minutes of your day for worry time. Postpone all your worries to that allotted timezone. Use the Worry Tree to filter your worries. What am I worrying about?  Is it a real or hypothetical worry?  If it's hypothetical, postpone it for another time. If it's real, draw up an action plan to address it. And then let the worry go. (Checkout the Worry Tree App).

  • Another self-help technique is to focus on the original problem and then work to resolve this problem rather than worrying about the worry itself. This involves capturing and recording each worry in a Thought Journal.

  • Try mindfulness meditation and breathing. Regular sessions will help you to recognise your own thought patterns and the effect they are having. Breathing calmly will help to reduce the physical sensations of anxiety and the intensity of your worries.

  • Get plenty of sleep. People are more likely to worry when they are tired and fatigued. When you are fully rested you are likely to be less sensitive to negative worry.

  • Take regular cardio exercise with the goal of achieving at least 20 minutes per day for five days a week. This could be a brisk walk, run or moderate to intense workout.

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Don't Feed the Monkey Mind: How to Stop the Cycle of Anxiety, Fear and Worry.

Jennfer Shannon 2017

HELPFUL READING
 

The Book of Overthinking: How to Stop the Cycle of Worry

Gwendoline Smith 2021

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The Worry Trick: How Your Brain Tricks You into Expecting the Worst and What You Can Do

David A Carbonell 2016

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