Worry wart

I’ve always been a bit of a worrier – it’s a hereditary thing, I think.

Sometimes I worry about sensible things – like whether I’ve left my hair straighteners plugged in, or have put the candle out properly or where my keys are: you know, normal stuff that normal people worry about.

The rest of the time I worry about stuff that I don’t think normal people worry about – like whether the post-it notes are stacked in the ‘correct’ order, or the angle the tins in the cupboard are at, or whether one of my friends has changed their minds about me and has decided that they now hate my guts, or whether the world really will end at midnight without me having said some important things to important people. Or that my cat Gryff will get sick and that if so that it’ll have been my fault.

Sometimes I worry that I’ve got too much to worry about and sometimes I worry that I don’t have enough on my plate. It gets out of hand quite quickly, worrying, and that’s exactly what happened yesterday.

I woke up. It was the dreaded Bank Holiday Weekend and I’d been worrying about that, so I suppose I woke up with a worried head on my shoulders. Then my worried head went and decided that something had happened (let’s keep it cryptic for now, the effect is the same anyway). It’s a thing that I’ve always known was going to happen, but for lots of complicated reasons I wasn’t expecting it to happen for a while.

Having decided that the thing had happened worry gave in to anxiety which moved quite quickly onto panic followed by an internal rage. I started to feel like I wanted to smash the whole world up because this thing had happened and there was nothing I could do to make it un-happen.

And then the rage started to subside. I didn’t actually know whether the thing had happened. It probably hadn’t. Then again, I know that the thing is going to happen and that when it does I’ll be very worried about it, and I might get anxious and…. before I knew it I was dealing with the internal rage that comes from worrying about how worried you’ll be when something you’re worried about happens at an unspecified point in the future.

So far, the only thing I’ve come up with for managing the worry/anxiety/rage cycle is telling myself, repeatedly that it will pass. I know that I’m supposed to find a way to challenge the thoughts but I don’t seem to be able to get there at the moment. Waiting it out does seem to work, because I only spent a few hours of yesterday dealing with the rage, rather than the whole day.

Anyway, back to the thing that’s going to happen. It occurred to me today that maybe I should take some kind of pre-emptive action to cushion myself from the blow it will strike when it does occur; maybe it’ll be better if I make the thing happen rather than wait for it to happen?  The thing is, this idea is just another thing to worry about.

So now I’m worrying about how worried I’ll be if I take action to stop myself worrying about how worried I’ll be when something I’m worrying about happens. Told you it gets out of hand!

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