I have been thinking about worrying. It is more accurate to say I have been worrying about worrying. As detailed in my previous post, I went through the stressful experience of moving recently. One of the things that I noticed was how when I have one big worry a lot of other worries come out to play and join the party. What I am wondering is how do I break this cycle?
When I was fourteen my G.P, a kindly man called Dr. Elliot told me that I was a ‘natural born worrier’. Being in the midst of puberty and the general social awkwardness that goes with it, this was not what I wanted to hear. What I wanted to hear was that I was a ‘natural born warrior’, which is way cooler, much more impressive and an awesome name for a wrestler. Alas, this was not the case. With my dreams of a successful career in the WWE in tatters, I left the surgery and have spent the last twenty years or so as a worry-aholic.
I am not saying that worrying is entirely bad. Some worry is prudent and sensible. Frankly, I mistrust people who live their lives in a Bobby McFerrin state of not worrying and being happy. In this world of ours, there is much to worry about. Seriously, what are One Direction going to do without Zane? The problem with worrying is when it gathers other worries and forms a super storm.
What I am trying to do is find a happy medium (so I told a joke to a psychic) where I give due consideration to issues in my life but not to the point where I lay awake all night because I can’t stop thinking about them. I do not as yet have a solution to this, and if I did I would probably be much richer than I am now. I do have a few observations and thoughts on the subject.
Sometimes there really is nothing that can be done about a situation. As a result, worrying about it is pointless. Now, I will be honest and say that this sucks. It really does. I often think ‘if only I had done this’ or ‘perhaps if I do that’ but the reality is that I did not do that and I cannot do this now. Whatever it is is now in the hands of fate, or luck or a whimsical deity that may or not exist. There is nothing that can alter it. This is a terrifying concept to know that sometimes we have absolutely no control over our lives or what happens in it, but that is life folks. In this context worrying is futile.
Let us take another example; one where we can control what we do but not the outcome. I wrote my first book and it has yet to get an agent. On the one hand I can worry about making it as good as possible, but there are too many variables for me to worry about the rest.Will my book land on the right desk on the right day of a person in the right mood? Who can possibly say? All that I can do is do my best and hope for the best.
My last thought comes from a recent conversation between my girlfriend and I. We had been discussing an issue and were going round and round in circles without getting anywhere. I said ‘How much of a thing is this?’ and she replied ‘Is it even a thing?’ In essence, look at the thing you are worrying about. Actually, get a deerstalker hat, smoke a pipe and use a magnifying glass to study it in detail. See it for what it actually is rather than what it is perceived to be and then judge it.
Worries are much like Hydra in the Captain America movies. If you cut the head off one, two more will grow to take it’s place. The positive here is the flaw in Hydra’s long term business plan; there are only a finite number of heads on a hydra. If you keep lopping off heads then eventually all you will have is a pile of skulls and the R.S.P.C.A breathing heavily down your neck. Worries are different because in theory they could be infinite, but only if you let them. What you can do is manage the important ones and keep cutting the heads off the rest until they stop growing back.
Take care, buddies,