Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow, it only saps today of its joy. ~Leo Buscaglia
When you worry you repeatedly think of negative thoughts about a situation. Since the thoughts aren’t pleasant they result in anxiety. Like most human traits, a small dose of worrying is helpful. It prompts you to think of a possible situation and plan how to deal with it. However, too much worrying sucks out the enjoyment of life.
ADHD Adults worry more than the average person, because they are smart and imaginative and use that imagination to conger up all these worse case scenarios. Besides not being enjoyable, worrying makes us stressed and physically ill. Worry is a habit and can be changed. Here are your ADHD Coachs top 6 tips for combating worry:
1) Use your imagination to focus on what you DO want rather than what you don’t want. Don’t think of your plane crashing, instead picture it arriving safely and on time, your suitcase on the carousel and your loved ones at the gate to welcome you. Not only does this take away anxiety it actually makes you feel happy.
2) Share your worry. There is something about vocalizing your worries out loud that makes it shrink to normal proportions. When you are worried there is nothing better than connecting with another person. Plan B, if there isn’t another human being around, saying your worry aloud is still very helpful. It also has that shrinking effect. That is why worry dolls are so helpful (The picture for today’s article is of worry dolls).
3) Write down everything you are worrying about on one side of the paper. Then on the other side, write down the action you can do towards each worry. Taking control over your worries and taking action is both empowering and freeing.
4) Be present. This can be hard when you have ADHD. Yet, if you notice you are repeatedly worrying about if you locked the front door decide to get present when you perform this activity. Notice yourself closing the door, putting your key in the lock, and turning it. More powerful still is to talk aloud as you are doing it, sort of a running commentary. Doing and speaking about the action at the same time helps you to remember that your door is definitely locked.
5) Just focus on today. Don’t let your mind wonder into the future. Most of our worries are about an event in the future and may actually never happen. So by living one day at a time most worries can be avoided.
6) Take care for yourself. I know I say this a lot, but by eating a healthy ADHD diet, exercising and sleeping well, your brain will be less prone to worry.