The “Worry Less Report” from Liberty Mutual Insurance indicated that 40 percent of people are chronic worriers. Women worry more than men, but as we age our worries tend to diminish.
Even so, many people continue to fret about money, housing, and relationships, as well as a variety of other concerns.
Worry differs from anxiety in that the former is more of a cognitive process, whereas the latter is more of an emotional one.
Because ruminating and fretting about future concerns generally does not eliminate anticipated problems, consider practicing some of the following strategies to reduce your worries.
• Practice meditation. You don’t have to spend time at a retreat or even drive to a meditation studio to practice this ancient relaxation method.
Now there are apps you can download on your smartphone that provide guided meditation sessions. Only 10 minutes each day may help to reduce your worries, and you’ll have the additional benefits of less pain and better cognitive focus.
• Talk about your concerns. Many people feel embarrassed about their daily worries and hesitate to share them with others.
However, articulating your concerns to a sympathetic friend or family member can help put them into perspective and allow your mind to focus on constructive thoughts. If your worries are overwhelming, you can consult with a mental health professional.
• Write them down. Making a list of the issues that worry you can provide another way to organize them and put them into perspective.
You might construct two columns of worries — those that you can do something about and those you have no control over. You can then consider actions you can take to reduce your worries about issues under your control and consider letting go of those
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