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Category Archives: routines & rituals

Two Tips for Chronic Worriers

The thing that frightened my husband most during my potentially fatal pregnancy complication was the fact that I was not worrying about what was going on.

So…my name is Tracy, and I am a worrier.

two tips for chronic worriers

I tend to hide that fact as much as I can (another problem in itself) which means that it explodes in my head at strange times. I can tell you from personal experience that trying to pretend you’re not worried doesn’t work very well. So I was excited to find these two tips to deal with worries in A Woman’s Guide to Sleep: Guaranteed Solutions for a Good Night’s Rest by Joyce A. Walsleben, Ph.D., and Rita Baron-Faust.

1. Create a worry book

Use a simple notebook, or a section of your regular journal if the idea of having yet another notebook to write in causes you more worry. On the left hand side of the page, write down all the things that worry you. On the right hand side, list some forward motion on each of those items.

It may take some time to find an action to go with a particular worry…so don’t add that worry to your list! :) The idea is to both capture those concerns rolling around in your head and to brainstorm some possible solutions or actions to take to resolve them.

2. Worry productively

Choose a time and place where you can be alone, and in this time give yourself permission to worry. Worry freely, worry hard, worry widely. Write it all down in your worry book. Get it all out of your head.

Then, if you find yourself falling into Worryville at some other time of the day, tell yourself that you’ve already done your worrying for the day. The authors suggest telling yourself this: “I am not going there, I have done my worrying today, I’ll do it tomorrow. I have forgotten nothing, tomorrow I will go back where I left it and I’ll be fine. I should not be worrying now, and I wont.”

Wayne Dyer The activity of worrying keeps you immobilized. I love these two tips for two reasons:

1. Like Wayne Dyer says, “the activity of worrying keeps you immobilized.” (Don’t I know it!) By creating a space to note forward actions on each worry, you counteract that immobilization. Not to mention that space tells your mind there IS something you can do, no matter how small. That’s a much more powerful place to live from!

2. It gives you some perspective about how much you’re actually worrying. In the midst of a rough time, it can feel like all you do is worry. By worrying productively, you may be better able to tell if there are simply a lot of things happening, or if your worries might be a symptom of an anxiety disorder.

Are you a worrier? What helps you cope? Share your thoughts in the comments! 

Tracy at women making changes


One Response to Two Tips for Chronic Worriers

  1. Karen says:

    I used to think that I was not a worrier, but I’ve come to realize that I was just living a much simpler life. It was easy to roll with the flow of things. As our lives have become more complicated, though, I realize that I am a worrier. Or what people would call a worrier. To me, I just like to think about any and all eventualities in a situation, so that when I am confronted with the situation, I’ve already thought it out and know how to react. I suppose it sounds like worrying, with all of the “what if’s” involved. My daughter tells me that I’m a control freak and that is part of the “illusion” of control, all of the “what if’s.” It used to work for me, but I am not sure it has been beneficial the last couple of years. I do like your idea of creating a worry book. That might be helpful! Right now I’m back on the Relora (natural supplement) to help ease the anxiety that seems pervasive in my life these last couple of years.

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7 Tips For Making Your Practice Successful, Not Stressful

In the last 3 years, I have made some remarkable changes in my life. I’ve added something I really love which is painting, and I’ve let go of more than 700 items in my home.  There is more to do in both of these areas but I have no doubt that I will continue toContinue Reading

One Response to 7 Tips For Making Your Practice Successful, Not Stressful

  1. Karen says:

    It takes me forever to make anything become a “practice” – thirty days is a crock! LOL

    I was determined in April to make taking my morning vitamins a practice (there were certain supplements I really, really needed for my low seratonin levels). My husband has done so for years, decades, really. I dole them out every morning and he takes them. I rarely took mine, though. I have learned that I have to take them with food and if I don’t take them at breakfast, I won’t take them at all that day. So far, so good. I would say that, since April, I have probably missed ten days of taking them, Like you, Kel, if I skip a day, suddenly I will have skipped a week and never thought a thing about it.

    I’ve a long way to go, though, before it is a practice. It’s been over five months and still, most days I have to resist the urge to skip them. I have to give myself a pep talk as I walk past the container that yes, I really do need them. Maybe by this time next year ….

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Starting Something Vs. Building a Practice

I recently talked with a friend about a change she was trying to make in her life. I asked her how it was going, and if the change was helping her. The answer was, “No, I tried it a couple of times and it didn’t work so I stopped doing it. There is a big differenceContinue Reading

3 Responses to Starting Something Vs. Building a Practice

  1. I began building a practice about a month ago.
    I painted the door to my laundry room with black chalkboard paint just for fun. Then one morning instead of laying in bed and worrying, fretting and generally building monsters in my head, I got up and made a lovely pot of coffee and drew on my chalkboard. I’ve done this every morning since. It brings a beautiful peaceful start to my day and totally feeds my soul. It’s so freeing to draw and create for no special purpose other than I want to.
    Of course, being an attention craving artist, I take a photo of my masterpieces and post them on my Instagram. It’s amazing how doing just a quick 15 minute design loosens up your brain for other creativity to flow through.

    • Karen says:

      What a wonderful idea, Rebecka!

      I have been crocheting for the first hour or so after the hubby goes off to work. He has been getting up earlier the last couple of months, leaving a full hour earlier than normal. At first I’d go back to sleep, but the last few weeks I’ve been staying up and crocheting. I am getting a lot more crocheting done, and also more productive throughout the day, even though I am very tired by the end of the week. Bedtime around here comes really early these days!

  2. Carol says:

    Really good and inspiring ideas, ladies. I do something similar when I am home, making sure I do some knitting or quilting first thing in the morning. I like Rebecka’s idea of doing something purely spontaneous and temporary. I need to give that some thought.

    Since I’m currently a month into at least a three month visit with my daughter and family awaiting our fourth grandchild, I am finding it a challenge to continue with my usual practices – stretching, meditating and writing. The stretching is working itself off as my body is being quite vocal if I skip that, but the other two are very hit or miss. I’m not sure how to change that right now. And maybe it isn’t necessary, as having this intense time with the girls feeds my soul in a different and very good way.

    I can absolutely vouch for the advantage to having a buddy on my journey. A friend and I have been sharing our gratitude lists nearly daily for several months now. More days than I care to admit having that bit of accountability has helped center me and reminded me to continue my gratitude practice.

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Reboot-Returning to My Natural Settings

October Reboot  I’ve been gone for 2 of the 3 weeks we’ve had in October.  Much of it was unplanned, unexpected. Three people have commented to me on how “good” I look since I’ve gotten back. I think it’s because of all the things I did while I was away that I don’t normally do.Continue Reading

One Response to Reboot-Returning to My Natural Settings

  1. Those pictures are lovely. I’m so glad you had a chance to travel and reboot. I spent 12 days in Alabama and the weather was lovely, there were real trees (although not quite as colorful as what you posted here) and I had wonderful visits with family. The legal stuff I had to handle (the reason for the visit) didn’t go so well, but I didn’t expect it to anyway. And there will be more to come, but at least it will give me more trips to visit grandbabies!

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