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Published on September 26th, 2013 | by Nathaniel


4 Warning Signs You Might be a Chronic Over-Worrier


We commonly think of worry as in “a worry,” isolated, fluffy, and harmless- a mere forethought based on the perception of an unforeseen future. But have you ever thought of it as an art-form? Some of us have so perfected worry that it becomes habitual- to the point that we don’t even realize we’re doing it! In a have-more, be-more society, it’s too easy to Picasso our lives into worry.  Do you?

(Aside from reading this post) Here are four warning signs that you’re a chronic over-worrier:


1. You’re usually the last one to order at group dinners…

Indecisive: Have to admit, I’m guilty. Instead of ordering the chicken breast like I planned, I sift back and forth, allowing the pendulum to swing from steak to vegetarian and every healthy, fatty, and discount-option in between.

Realization: It doesn’t just stop at dinner… Some of us apply this “dinner-philosophy” to how we choose a girlfriend/ boyfriend. We’ve spent so much time weighing the options that we don’t realize how much time is passing by. There is no right choice. Every choice will have some pros and cons. Focus on your intention and leave the rest at the door.


2. You have a cabinet of flu meds…And it’s mid-summer…

Overly-anticipating: You’re not sick. You don’t know if you will be sick, yet you’ve already decided that when the Fall-flu hits, you’re gonna get it because you got it last year. So you decide to get your DayQuil, NyQuil, and every other Quil while it’s on sale.

Realization: We sometimes allow our past to dictate our future by pre-determining that things won’t and can’t change. It’s great to gain wisdom and insight from our past experiences, but we have to let it stop there.


3. On lunch dates/meetings…you ALWAYS get a separate check…

Selfishness: There’s a time and place for this but if this is always the case, it’s a bigger problem than you think it is. Maybe it’s just my generation but we’ve got to stop this “Can we get the bill split four ways, please?” I know that for me it stems from a deep rooted fear that I just don’t have it and I’ve got to hold onto what I’ve got, while I’ve got it.

Realization: The fear and worry behind not offering to serve someone else because we won’t have enough doesn’t dissipate when we get more. (I’m picturing friends referencing this post the next time we meet up…and I’m okay with that 🙂 )


4. Every time you get called in by your boss…you think it’s D-day…

Insecurity: You’re doing your job- sending those emails, tending to that patient, managing corporate communication, yet you feel “impending-doom” every time someone in a position of power wants to speak with you. You’ve already mapped out the scenario, updated your LinkedIn, and are Cragslisting away.

Realization: Worry convinces us to believe the worst is going to happen. Even if there are no signs of “the worst,” worry says you’re not X and you’re not Y, so you must be unworthy of Z.

Control is an illusion- a mirage of lies that lead us to believe we’re pulling the reins. And unfortunately, this couldn’t be further from the truth. We constantly have to deal with opposing forces, closed doors, missed opportunities, and unforeseen events. The source of our worry is often in our futile attempt to maintain control. But our confusion is understandable; the world and the Word suggest conflicting messages- how can we manifest our destiny and at the same time adhere to the realization that we can’t control everything? In a previous article “Confessions of an (Ex) Over-Planner,” I mentioned that the key is knowing when to surrender. We are given the free will to make choices over our lives and with that free will, we are given the ability to initiate, accept, and adapt to change. We also have to evaluate when to give the situation to God and trust that His mysterious ways will ultimately translate into our eternal good.

Matthew 6:34 “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”


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