Worrying Up, or how I learned to stop worrying and love "worrying."
Posted on February 01 2016
Imagine if you could take all the energy that you put into worrying that things might go wrong, and channel it into worrying that things might go right.
The other day, a woman in a group I'm part of shared a revelation that struck her from what I can only imagine was divine intervention.
I will do my best to share that revelation with you.
Worrying is a skill
Here you are, minding your own business, and suddenly a hailstorm of thoughts strike you: Hmm. So-and-so didn't respond to my email. What if so-and-so isn't responding to my email because they don't have the money to pay the invoice, and if they don't have the money to pay the invoice, then I won't have the money to pay my invoices... let alone rent... and if I don't have the money to pay my invoices and rent, then my business will go under and I won't have a place to live and OH MY GOD I'M GOING TO BE HOMELESS.
OH MY GOD, I'M GOING TO BE HOMELESS.
That came from nowhere.
That was f*#king creative, my friend. And you are damn good at that creativity.
Just like anything, worrying is a skill. If you grew up with an expert worrier parent, you had a fantastic mentor who was able to cultivate this creative art to a frenzied and miserable lifestyle. You were coached on the ways it could keep you up at night, how it could compromise relationships with your children by perpetually hovering, and when it's best to share your worries (always, whenever they come to mind).
My mom had an epic worrier as a parent. She is much less worried than her mom was, but still worries from time to time. That "OH MY GOD, I'M GOING TO BE HOMELESS" was straight from what I think between the hours of 2:30 and 4 every morning.
I'm great at worrying.
So when I read this woman's post, felt like I'd just read a job description tailored for my personal skill set. OMG I have worrying NAILED.
So here you are, minding your own business, and a single hailstone hits you on the head: So-and-so still hasn't responded to my email. I wonder what's going on?
You have two directions here. You can go the above route of "they must not have any money [elapsed] OMG I'm going to be homeless," or you could go a new route.
As it is right now, you don't have any real information, all you have is a swirl of assumptions.
So why not worry up? Change the end state of "omg I'm going to be homeless" to something that defines success to you, like "I'm going to need to hire a full time accountant to deal with all the money coming in."
And then let your creative mind get to work... you know you have it in you, because from an innocent thought, you were able to create a scenario where everything was falling apart. Just apply that same creativity to making a positive outcome.
So-and-so still hasn't responded to my email. I wonder what's going on? They must be selling the products so quickly that they don't have time to get back to me. Oh man, that means they'll need to order more. Ah, but what if that order comes in during the Whole Foods buying season and of course I'm going to be sending many orders to new stores? Well, then I guess maybe I'll have to hire someone. An accountant... because I don't think I can handle all the invoices and receivables I'll be dealing with if I get more than 50 other Whole Foods stores. Ah well, I'll have money to hire them, at least. Man, these next few months are going to be awesome.
I'll admit, I'm out of practice of worrying up. I only just started it a few days ago, so it still feels a little awkward. My brain keeps sneaking in negative things to worry about even in the middle of my worrying up.
But hey, I'm sleeping better at night, and that's what matters.
And this worrying up scenario reminded me that I have to get in touch with Whole Foods during their buying season.
So put that creative brain to work and get to worrying!