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Are You a Worrier? See What's Inside My Worry Toolbox

November 25, 2015

When I meet with clients in my private practice, many tell me that they struggle with worry. These worry thoughts usually sound like: What if this, what if that... (fill in the blank with your own worry). When we worry, we are way down the road of life predicting bad things.

 

Worry likes to show up when we want to sleep because it creeps in when we're not distracted by anything else. Or it shows up when we're sitting around and have too much downtime. I often refer to worry as "monkey mind." It's like a little monkey running around that won't settle down.

 

There are many techniques you can use to manage your worry. You can think of these techniques as being  like "tools" in a toolbox and you can pick them up at any time and use them.

 

One of my favorite worry techniques is to set a worry time. Yes,

that's right, a worry time. This will help you train your mind to contain your worry into a compartment or block of time.

 

Here's how it works. Set a 15 minute worry time each day. During this time, you can sit down and write out all your worries. Then divide this list into 2 categories: (1) things that are within your control and (2) things that are NOT within your control. This awareness alone can be very helpful.

 

We often worry and try to control things that are not within our control. Like what other people do or say or we worry about the weather or... 

 

So back to the worry list. Now that you know what's within your control, you can work on these things by setting a goal and working on it. But the most important part is knowing what is not within your control. When these worries pop up again, and they will, focus on letting them go. Visualize letting them go and get busy and distract yourself.

 

And when your worries pop up outside the worry time, remind yourself to wait until the set worry time to worry! So make a conscious effort to let go of talking about them and thinking about them. Then distract yourself so the monkey mind doesn't start up again.

 

 

 

Think of all the time and energy you'll have when you let these worries go.

 

That the birds of worry and care fly over your head,

this you cannot change,

but that they build nests in your hair,

this you can prevent.

CHINESE PROVERB

 

 

If you know anyone who would benefit from what you've read here, please forward this blog to them or send them over to my website - thepsychologysite.org.

 

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Hi! I'm Beth Matthews. I'm a Registered Psychologist who is driven to helping people feel better about themselves. I help people who are struggling in their lives gain an awareness of how they can cope with anything that comes their way. With my easy-to-use strategies, you can feel better and be your best you!

 

matthews77@shaw.ca

780-721-9157

 

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