Saturday, January 5, 2019

Giving Up Overthinking and Excessive Worry for 2019! Why it Is Imperative for Your Health! How To Start!

Achieving vibrant health starts with peacefully balancing the mind, heart and soul. If these are out of balance, your health will suffer no matter how nutritious your diet is and how clean your lifestyle is, though these are important. You must achieve health starting from the inside, the deepest areas of your life. 

Stop Worrying! 

So easy for others to tell you when life has years in upheaval.  For three years I never knew from one day to the next what my day would be like. That is how it is when you take care of someone who is sick or dying. It may be a child with autism or cancer . It may be a spouse with serious health problems. Your life is so uncertain that it can lead to exaggerated worry and anxiety levels to the point where it hurts your health and mental well being. How can you help your loved ones, if your own health and mental well being fails?

Overthinking and being too serious can be a personality trait you are born with. I remember growing up with a father who didn't work at times and a mom who worked herself into the ground making up for it.  She worked from dawn to bedtime.  She had little time for fun or herself.  I can remember being worried that she would get sick from the hours she put in  and what we would do when my father was not working.  There were older neighbors for whom I loved who I worried about.  I was never a care free kid. I was serious ...too serious. This was before I got out into the real world with being on my own.  For those of us who have a very serious nature, humor and taking time for yourself is something we have to learn. It does not come natural.   This too serious nature is a good trait and a negative one.  You have great work ethics but there is more to life than work!

Humor and laughing is important for health and getting through life with less stress. It takes the edge off our stressful lives.  So its important to understand yourself with your good and negative points. Having a sense of humor may have to be developed when it isn't natural for your personality type. How do you develop a sense of humor? Make friends with those who do or marry someone who can lead you into your less serious side. Make yourself take watch shows that are funny. You may find you really enjoy them once you get over the guilt of doing something fun.  Serious people often feel guilty just messing off. The work ethic is so strong, it just takes over everything. You may have to discover and nurture your less serious side that is hiding in your personality. I don't think I smiled until I was 20 and worked with a morning crew of guys at Alpha Beta Supermarket who teased me until I realized it was fun to tease back.  They taught me how to loosen up. Even after that, I was till too driven and serious often but believed that good comes from every event in our lives. I overcame my tendency to worry during hard times with my faith in God.

I am blessed that I married Marty later in life to balance out my seriousness.  For the years prior to our marriage, I had taken on care-giving. Watching people die is hard on the heart even if they are at peace with it. It is a sobering job though rewarding for the heart.  When we met, I needed a lighter life at that point. I needed to let my heart heal. He has shown me how to nurture my smile over the past 10 years.  He is funny and quirky in his humor. He is and always will be my balance. His love is a huge blessing.

During the time of taking care of his father, I lost my sense of humor completely. At 65, my patience was not at its top level. That was not good. That led to toxic worry that was affecting my sleep and my disposition. My faith in God got pretty tattered as well. We all have gotten to the point of wondering if we can go on and for how long taking care of someone who is seriously ill or dying.  Only caregivers will understand this statement. After his father died, I was still immersed in grief and  worry with all the paperwork and red tape that comes with your loved one dying and being the ones to deal with the medical bills.   Nothing Marty said helped me to sleep at night with all the questions running around in my mind.  This is one of the main issues underlying sleep problems which leads to other problems such as adrenal exhaustion, cortisol imbalance and endocrine problems to name a few.  If you do not stop this process, it destroys your immune system. That is why the death of a spouse often leads to the death of the remaining spouse within hours, days, or months.  How do you stop the process?

I came to a point one day, the load was too heavy to keep going. I came to the realization that life when you get older, has no concrete answers for the remaining years. No matter of worry will give you answers. Even if you are wealthy, that does not secure your life will be without pain or cancer. Your wealth can disappear in weeks. With my independent nature, where I had always felt called to solve the problems, I gave it to God. You can say you have given it to God, you can say you do it but have you really? You have to give up control. You have to trust and really turn over your problems or questions to a higher source. You need to realize that it is critical to your health to do so. I started focusing on Marty and the other people in my life who needed me. Right before Christmas a woman we know lost her husband at 40 from a genetic heart problem. It was a complete shock. In the end, all we have is today, this hour and this minute. All else is undetermined. That last I love you or that last hug could be all there is.

Excessive worry was keeping me from being the best wife I could be and the best friend I could be. It got in the way of enjoying my children and grandchildren. It gets in the way of everything in your life. I have always been the kind of person who believes in the end, things will turn around for the good. Excessive worry can lead you into 'the glass is half empty' thinking.

You have to ask yourself who do you want to be? 

A positive person or a negative one?

Is your way of thinking helping you or counterproductive?

 If you ask those questions and deal with the answers honestly, you see the path you need to go toward.

When you have done all you can do and there is no way to predict the future events, no matter how dire, give up the worry. It does no good to lose sleep over what you can do nothing about.  It is about giving up control and just letting go.  This is hardest for the independent personalities out there. How well I know that.

If you can worry, YOU can STOP worrying!  Remember the joke where the guy says to the doctor that whenever he moves his arm in a certain way, it hurts. The doctor tells the patient stop doing that and it won't hurt.  We need to Stop our running negative chatter.

You must take back control over your mind and thoughts. It is stopping the 'What If' chatter in your head".   It is putting away, "I should have; I didn't get this done;Why didn't I get that done?" chatter. 

Only YOU can do that.  It is within your control and power to stop it.

Once you do that, your sleep will improve and your health problems will even out to a great degree.  It is about giving up your control to a higher source.  You still do all you can each day to make the days count and to solve your problems but if something does not get done on your list, it just is not worth losing sleep over.  The earlier you learn this and do it, the easier your life and load will be.  Think about all that you have come through in your life and you will get through what is coming one way or another. So stop along your day and enjoy what ever pleasure or joy comes into your path.  I would suggest to those reading this to start today. The sooner you start, the more years you will have to enjoy life.  Take this from one who has always had to work at having fun and laughing. 

Adopt the stance, no matter how hard the day, " I choose JOY and gratitude"

Do this for yourself today....give up excessive worrying.   

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