I’m a worrier. I hate it.
So much time is wasted on worrying and it does absolutely no good. Have you ever noticed it’s the hypothetical situations that you worry about the most? It’s always: what if this happens, what if that, what if, what if, what if?!?! So annoying.
I became a worrier ever since getting pregnant. Once the baby was born, well, the worrying only got worse. I’m sure I worried before, but it was never that intense. I was diagnosed with postpartum anxiety. I didn’t even know there was a postpartum anxiety, but apparently it exists and it’s more common than postpartum depression. It’s pretty awful.
Thankfully, the intensity of that anxiety has left and I’m left with a much more mild anxiety.
I know it’s bad for me so I do my best to stop–then I worry about how much my worrying has affected my health. So often it feels like an endless cycle. It’s pretty frustrating.
There is reprieve from the madness though. I’ve been working on my worrying and sometimes I do great and other times I let it take over. I feel it’s something that you need to practice in order to take hold of it. The good news is, I’m getting better at it.
Here are five things I do to help with the worrying. I’m not a doctor so this is not intended to be or replace medical advice, but these are tips that have really helped me out a lot.
Write out the worry.
Write the worry down and really express yourself. Don’t hold back, don’t worry if someone is going to see your words. Burn the pages after, hit the delete button, scratch it out—but don’t let that fear keep you from writing our your concerns in one way or the other. Simply writing out your thoughts feels like you’re letting it go in a way. You’re getting it off your shoulders. Write till you feel better.
See if it’s even a problem you can do anything about.
Can you do anything about the worry right this instant? If not, it’s most likely a problem not worth worrying about. You can’t do anything more by worrying, so write the thought down, let it go, and walk away.
Get some fresh air and sunshine.
Fresh air and vitamin D are known to help boost your mood. A Change in scenery might take your mind off whatever you’re worried about.
While you’re getting that fresh air and sun, go out for a walk. Moving your body helps get those awful feelings and worries out. It doesn’t have to be an hour or two at the gym. Just take the dog for a walk, dance, do whatever you can to move your body.
Be smart about what you put in your body; make sure you’re getting all your vitamins and nutrients. Don’t eat poor quality food day after day. That will only make you feel worse. If you take care of your body, that’s one less thing you have to worry about.
Control what you can and that will help you feel better all around. You will feel more prepared and in control and that will give you strength.
You might think, “duh Carolann, that’s pretty much common sense. “ You’re right, it is something that we should all be doing, but reality is a different story. I know a lot of times when I start slacking on the last three points (fresh air/sun, exercise, and healthy eating) the anxious thoughts start piling up again. I feel like I’ve lost control and my physical health is affected by my mental health. Sleeplessness, chest pains, nausea, panic attacks, are just a few of the symptoms.
In my next post, I’ll discuss how eating well really helps me and my review of Whole30.
What do you do to help prevent constant worry and anxiety? Have you found any foods that help?