Part II of Her Meanest Day
When caught in the rip current of fret, you feel like there’s no end in sight. You’re stuck in the flow of overwhelming thoughts. How did I miss that conference call?! Did I phrase that correctly? Should I have said yes instead of no? Why didn’t I say no? I should have included her in the thank you email! How could I forget? I can’t afford this! What was I thinking?
While in the back of your mind you know that this current will eventually end, but you don’t know when. You just keep worrying and wondering until finally…like floating free from a rip current, you just aren’t worried about that one thing anymore.
Fretting has no purpose. It can’t change what we did, nor can it give us any answers. It’s simply a waste of energy, energy that we could be using for so many other things, including, relaxing. The less time spent fretting, the better. The only way to stop worrying from taking over your day, is to practice skills like thought suppression, behavior replacement and self confidence.
Of course some fret more than others. For me, fretting can creep up and sweep me away. Because of this I’ve learned certain techniques that help me stay away from its strong current.
1. Change the setting around you. If you’re in the living room watching a movie trying to chill, but the worry is still hanging around, change locations. Move to the porch. Go for a walk.
2. Focus on a task that you enjoy. Move away from the source of stress like your computer or phone and toward another task. Open your sketchbook, water your plants or study your gourmet cookbook etc. Preoccupy yourself and focus on another project.
3. Get moving. Do a workout. Run some errands. Go for a swim. Shake up some dopamine.
4. Call a friend or relative that you trust; go ahead and vent. If he or she is a good confidante, your feelings will be validated and you will be reassured enough to move on.
5. Write down what you’re thinking. Not only will you feel relieved, but also writing down what you’re worrying about will paint a realistic picture. If you’re writing about an email, once you’re done, you are more likely to let the issue go and think, “why am I literally fretting over one email?”
What strategies do you implement to dilute unnecessary anxieties?
I’m so pleased to announce that three of my poems, “Slots,” “Scraping” and “Make a Decision” have been published in Barking Sycamores Literary Magazine Issue 13. Barking Sycamores is dedicated to neurodivergent literature and its craft. I’m so honored to be a part of this project. Barking Sycamores Issue 13
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