Worry Less and Live Longer
Is worrying creating a vicious cycle that is deeply affecting your life in various ways?
As humans, it is impossible to not worry as it is part and parcel of life.
However, do you find yourself constantly feeling anxious and troubled, be it over actual or even potential Issues you foresee?
Generally, responsibilities and the need to meet expectations maybe some of the key triggers which contribute to worry. Worrying affects us in every stage of our life and the intensity varies throughout, depending on our life circumstances.
I’m Only Human…
Each of us has our own shortcomings and inadequacies which makes us human. One of the common flaw we share as a human is that we worry too much sometimes. The tendency to worry happens to us as a form of survival mechanism as we try to get a grip on life and have things under control.
We have numerous things to worry about at different stages of our life, and I personally have countless panic attacks myself due to excessive worrying. In the early stages, there is school stuff and assignment deadlines whilst upon graduation, the job hunting for a position that is worth my qualification.
Subsequently, the part about adulting comes into play. There are bills to pay, commitments, and a never-ending list of responsibilities to think of. These are all the normal stuff that we generally have to handle, but when it gets beyond our means, that is when the worrying comes.
My Worries and Woes Makes Me Blue
The occasional worries we have are not something to be alarmed about. However, when we find ourselves constantly worrying and it leads to forming negative thoughts and expecting the worst, it can take a toll on our emotional and physical health. Worrying drain us emotionally and can incite restlessness and lead to several other side effects like muscle tension, headaches, insomnia, and messes with the digestive system at times.
This will take a toll on our performance and its effects can manifest itself in our personal and professional lives leading to a string of other issues. Excessive worrying in which we feel unease and start to get overly concerned about a situation or problem is basically a negative response we have towards the situation. The worrying happens in our mind and when we get so worked up about what might happen by constantly focusing on it, our minds will go on overdrive.
When this happens, it can cause panic and trigger anxiety, giving a person a sense of impending doom and visualizing unrealistic fears. I personally do feel this way and have bouts of panic attacks when the worrying starts to get a stronghold of me, rendering me helpless. It may last for a few minutes to half an hour and result in heart palpitations and involuntary twitching of the limbs.
After some research and digging online, I found out that chronic worrying is linked to emotional stress and it can be a trigger to other health problems too. Worrying will result in the release of cortisol – a hormone that mainly functions to boost blood sugar levels and triglycerides, which is used by the body for fuel. On the other hand, the hormone is also known as a stress hormone and can result in physical reactions like dizziness, nausea, fatigue, headaches, sweating, and twitching, among others.
On a more serious note, the stress from excessive worrying may also lead to short term memory loss, premature coronary artery disease and even heart attack! When symptoms of excessive worrying go untreated, it may also lead to depression and even prompt suicidal thoughts.
Don't Worry, Be Happy for the Pains You Are Feeling Today Maybe Tomorrow's Rewards!
Although it is common for us to have things that we worry about, we must have a coping mechanism to manage and regain control of our life. Otherwise, it will impair our ability to function properly and can indefinitely reduce our years due to its harmful effects on the body.
We worry because there is a need for something to be done and once the matter is handled, the worry ceases to exist until the next thing appears again that demand our attention. As a respite from the worrying, some may choose the wrong approach to relieve themselves from their worries instead of really zooming in on the issue that triggered the worry. There are people that try to self-medicate and turn to drugs and alcohol for a reprieve.
As for me, I find myself prone to choosing ways to distract myself with unproductive means. I opt to zone out from having to figure out a way from the issue on hand that is causing the worry in the first place. This is not a healthy way to do so, but instead, you can try some of these suggestions that are proven to help ease your worrying.
Among the ways that you can implement to healthily and safely minimize the effect of worrying and the stress it’s causing, is to get moving and engage in an activity to take your mind of the issue. You can engage in an exercise routine and by exercising it helps to release endorphins, the ‘happy hormone’ that will help you to feel better and counter the effects.
If exercise seems a little excessive for you, you may opt for light meditation to switch your focus from worrying, but by being present in the now, which is also known as the practice of mindfulness. By focusing on the present, you will interrupt the loop of worries and also negative thoughts. As for on the spot remedy, try practicing deep breathing and pace yourself to regain control of your breathing and to calm your mind, when you realize that you start to panic or worry.