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Why do I worry so much?

Episode 248
Wildly Successful Lifestyle

LISTEN TO: Why do I worry so much?

Hi guys! Welcome to episode 248 of the wildly successful Lifestyle podcast!

Thanks for being here. It’s nice hanging out with you guys Monday and Friday. I like it, let’s keep it up what do ya say?

I think most of us can relate to that title…Why do I worry so much? Hang out because I give a specific answer at the end.

For now though, I have a question for you. How much of your life do you spend worrying? Really think about that. How much of your anxiety and misery is self induced and unnecessarily so?

When I asked myself that question and I thought about it, It was a lot more than I realized. I spend a lot of time worrying and I consider myself to be pretty laid back, and I don’t feel like I have a lot of stress but I notice Im causing myself stress. I’ll give you an example. The other morning…. I sent a text to someone and they didn’t respond and I worried what that meant. I had a headache which isn’t normal for me and I worried it would never go away. I had a few supply chain issues for a couple of my design projects and I worried how it would affect the overall project. My little 13 year old yorkie wouldn’t come down stairs with me in the morning and I worried she was sick. This was over like a 1 hour period in my day. I bet you can relate. I think most of us worry more than we realize.

Now, the person I had sent the text to was sick and hadn’t even looked at their phone, my headache went away fairly quickly, I was able to come up with alternative ideas for the supply chain issue, and my yorkie just wanted to sleep in. So none of these worries followed through to be something really bad.

How often are we feeling anxious and it’s not necessary? And how do we stop that? I think mostly it’s just that we aren’t aware we are doing it. When we let our brain go on auto pilot that’s when the worrying and the anxiety start. But we control the brain, not the other way around. I really never knew that until I started studying mindset and how the brain works. I used to think that I had no control of it, that I was my thoughts and my thoughts were just something that happened that was out of my control.

It’s not something we learn in school, partly because I don’t think teachers are taught that, so how are they going to teach something they haven’t learned? I think it is now becoming more mainstream but it hasn’t been previously.

We choose our thoughts whether it’s by intention or on autopilot. I for one, know that I have much better intentional thoughts than autopilot thoughts.
When you’re being intentional you are working from your pre frontal cortex which is your intelligent brain. When you are just letting your brain run free with thoughts and worries you are on autopilot and that is when you are working from your primitive brain, that’s the one that creates all the drama.

So how do I make sure more of my thoughts are intentional instead of on autopilot? First of all, Awareness. Recognizing that you are doing it. We spend a lot of our time just letting our brains have it’s way with us.

Being intentional and noticing when you’re allowing yourself to just accept whatever your brain throws at you. The other day our dishwasher wouldn’t start. It was just dead. No lights whatsoever. And that’s frustrating especially when it’s new and you have guests coming over. So I noticed my brain just started going on a worry rant, well what if it’s not fixable, what if we have to get a new one and the new ones are on backorder for a year, Im going to have to be washing dishes like a crazy woman and now that we are eating at home so much that’s all I’m going to be doing is washing dishes, well Im not doing that we will just have to eat out but then how do I eat out and still eat on my protocol…..All these thoughts went through my head in about I’d say 30 seconds. When I caught myself and said Hey wait a minute…..there’s worse things than washing dishes, people do it all the time, I used to do it when I was younger. I can figure out what’s wrong with the dishwasher if I just calm down and think it through logically and that’s exactly what I did. Guess what? It had come slightly unplugged from the outlet, so all I had to do was push it back in and wala. It worked.

But had I not stopped my brain from creating all that drama and unnecessary anxiety I would not have calmed down enough to just think it through like I did or at least it would have taken a lot longer and probably a call to an electrician.

We let our brains run amok so often we don’t even realize it.

We have arguments with people in our heads that never take place, we have fears in the middle of the night that are irrational, we have negative thoughts about ourselves that are simply not true, those are all products of our primitive brain and they don’t feel good. Guess what? You have the power to stop those thoughts in their tracks. As soon as you recognize you are having a thought that isn’t serving you, especially ones that make you feel bad like worrying, just stop and say I see you brain…I know you think you’re looking out for us, but I have it from here.

I use this a lot. Your primitive brain is like a 3 year old that wants what it wants and does not make good decisions so you have to take over whenever you realize it’s starting to act out. How will you know?

You’ll be laying there at night freaking out over stuff that wont matter in the morning, you’ll be having a silly made up argument in your head with your mom, you’ll be worrying about having to wash dishes for the rest of your life because your dishwasher is simply unplugged. We have to take back control. It’s just our brains way of trying to keep us safe. We don’t really need that safety feature anymore. Of course if we are in real danger, our logical brain will recognize that as well and training yourself to let the logical brain take the reins will help you especially if you do get it real danger. We have to train ourselves to focus on the solution not the problem. Our primitive brain will have you focusing on the problem and running back into the cave to hide. Your pre frontal cortex will have you coming up with a solution. Which one is going to give you a better outcome?

My challenge to you this week is to catch yourself the next time you notice you’re going into a spiral of negative thoughts and just stop and tell your brain, I see you, I get it, but I have it from here… That might look like waking up in the middle of the night and when you start to worry, just laugh and say I see you brain….but Ive got this, then go put on a sleep story or count backwards from 100, whatever works for you, but acknowledge that you have the power to stop the spiral as soon as you are aware that you’re doing it.

So the answer to why you worry so much is because part of your brain is hardwired to worry, and now you know you can do something about it, so you just have to decide that that’s not the part that’s gonna run your life.

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I love you guys and I’ll talk to you in a few days!

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