For many of us, worry is a viable emotion, a place where we work out solutions to some of the conflicts and problems we all come across.
Perhaps the worst thing about worry is that by the time you realize you’re overly concerned, you’re also overwhelmed by the sheer bulk of the problem.
Practically speaking, most things are easier to handle in small pieces, and worry is no exception. Often, spending some constructive time to dissect the problem is all that is needed to set oneself on the road to a solution. Here are five steps you might deem helpful the next time you find yourself a traveler in the land of worry.
Follow these Steps
- Constructive worry begins by taking the time to look at the problem. It helps here to write the problem on paper in an attempt to get perspective. Remember, even Adam had to name the beasts before he could rule over them, and the same principle applies when trying to put your finger on what is really bothering you.
- Once you’ve identified your concerns, make a list of three things you can do towards solving or at least bringing a measure of relief towards each problem. Don’t hesitate to list even those things you absolutely don’t want to do. Just writing them down can lessen the power they can have over you to exacerbate your worry.
- Take one problem at a time and implement just one of your solution steps toward solving the problem. For example, I recently had a problem with my tax return. I was so worried that I’d done something to cost us extra money that I was losing sleep. I called the IRS the next day, even though it was such a scary thought I didn’t want to face them. Guess what. That phone call saved me hundreds of dollars. Had I just written a letter as I originally intended, I would have spent another month worrying about the resolution to the matter?
- Sometimes the problem is beyond us. That’s when it’s time to get advice and help. A wise person seeks council. Don’t be afraid to get the help of a friend or professional. Sometimes, just listening to yourself describe your problem can be very enlightening.
- And yet, in spite of our best efforts, we can’t solve everything. Some things must be turned over to a higher power. In some cases, it may be A-okay to let go of our expectations, or just learn to love. Sometimes, all we can do is let go.
Worry is not the enemy. But, our inability to handle worry can wreck our health and peace of mind. By implementing these suggestions, you may be able to better handle the ‘solution process.’