With as many things as there are to worry about in this world – money, grades at school, stress at work, your boyfriend’s quirks – there are just as many ways to stop worrying about these things. Sometimes, all you need is a little perspective, or a little cup of tea. But sometimes, you need a short list of ways to stop worrying that are a little more hard-core. If this is one of those times, keep reading, my dear. Brew that cup of tea, and get ready to un-worry.
1. Write It down
Even the most complicated, convoluted problems seem less... problematic… when they’re written down in black and white. Sometimes, they even seem a little silly, and completely manageable. Try writing your worries in a journal, or simply jot them down on a sticky note. For extra perspective, tear that little sticky into bits once you’ve realized how ridiculous it is… this is one of my own favorite ways to stop worrying, and start smiling!
2. Talk It out
We all have that friend, the one who listens without interrupting or judging. If you’re worried about a particular thing, call your friend for a chat, or better yet, get together for an in-person tête-à-tête. Verbalizing your troubles is much more effective than posting passive-aggressive status updates on Facebook, and will, in some cases, even help you come up with a solution you hadn’t thought of inside your head. If not, your friend, the sounding board, may be able to help you find a solution, too.
3. Put It in Perspective
Worrying about whether or not you’ll get that promotion at work, or whether you can afford that new pair of boots you splurged on last week, may seem silly if you put it into perspective, against the bigger backdrop of your life. Don’t compare your life to someone else’s – that’s just going to make you feel guilty or bad – but rather look at your current worries in terms of five years out.
Aside from helping you get rid of muffin top or flabby upper arms, a little exercise can also go a long way toward settling your mind. Go for a run, or a long walk in the woods, or hit the gym for a yoga class or high-energy Zumba. For me, the rhythm of running clears my mind of worry, and even helps me relax.
5. Tune out
If you’re worried, the worst thing you can do is stew on it, or feed it, by watching the news, or fanning the flames of a feud on Facebook. Turn off the TV, shut down the computer, and try doing something constructive (like exercise!) instead.
6. Think “worst Case”
Okay, so what’s the worst thing that can happen? Your boyfriend, who’s been acting distant lately, may break up with you – and you’ll be better off without a man who doesn’t adore you. You may get passed over for that promotion - but you’ll still have a job. You might indeed have kidney stones – but they’ll pass. Whatever’s worrying you, try to think of the worst case scenario, and imagine coping with that. See? Not so insurmountable… and that’s the unlikely WORST case, which still may not actually happen.
7. Don’t Drink
While you might be tempted to drown your worries, resist the urge. Alcohol is a depressant, which will actually mean you’ll be making your worry worse… plus, alcohol has the nasty tendency to lessen our inhibitions, which makes us more inclined to compound our worries, not lessen them. Did you really get lit and send a pleading, pathetic text to your boss about that promotion?
8. Take Action!
Perhaps the most effective way to stop worrying is to stand up and take action. Solving the problem will often – surprise! – make the problem go away, so you can quit worrying and move on! Even thinking about taking action can help, so imagine what actually taking action can do!
See? Nothing to worry about, at least not for long! Which of these anti-worrying tips do you think will help most the next time you’re at your wit’s end? Or do you have any other ideas to share? Please do, and thank you!