Worry Pretends To Be Useful

May 13, 2021

If we look to external circumstances to keep us secure, we’ll always feel vulnerable and driven to control people and situations to prevent “bad” things from happening.

We look around and see existential threats everywhere. Fires. Floods. Extreme heat. A deadly, unpredictable virus. We can’t control any of it.

But with our kids’ lives, our survival brain likes to believe we SHOULD be on the alert for danger and that we must control and prevent bad outcomes. This is its mistaken attempt to keep us safe.

So we worry. Obsess. Manage. Control. Scold. Nag. All to ward off some potential threat that could come in any number ways–but typically revolve around school, chores, and difficult behavior.

But let me tell you: this is a complete waste of time and imagination.

Because when an actual, bad thing happens, you typically don’t see it coming. Life demands that you rise to the occasion, and you do.

My daughter was recently in a bad car accident while on her way to a hair appointment. Her car was totaled. She emerged only with a very sore neck and some deep scratches caused by her seatbelt on impact.

When I received her tearful phone call, there was no time to ruminate or obsess. The action was immediate: get to her as soon as possible and take care of her.

The next day, there was no time to ruminate, worry or be anxious about buying her another car that she HAD to have for school and work.

I got into action and found her a used car that we purchased that day. Yes, I felt anxious, overwhelmed, a bit in shock–but those feelings didn’t stop me from doing what was necessary to help her. I relied on my strength and wisdom to support me.

Hard, difficult things are going to happen in your life, and for your kids. Trusting that you can handle them is a much better use of your time, then worrying about them. And trust fills you with strength and confidence, whereas worry weakens and disempowers.

How will you build trust in yourself and your ability to be strong and resilient, no matter what?

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