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Stop Worrying That You Worry Too Much

How much time do you spend worrying about things? Do people tell you that you worry too much? That's not really useful, because that feeling of impending doom (or even just a little discomfort) is difficult to turn off. But are you worrying too much? Maybe, but you shouldn't worry about it. Worrying might actually be a good sign.

Well, maybe because — sometimes, in small doses — worrying can actually be good for you. In one study, for example, worrying was linked to recovery from trauma and depression, as well as increased “uptake of health-promoting behaviors,” like getting regular cancer screenings or resolving to kick a smoking habit. Others have found that worriers tend to be more successful problem-solvers, higher performers at work and in graduate school, and more proactive and informed when it comes to handling stressful events that life throws their way.

In other words, worry means you are being mindful about things that need solving or improvement. The key is to turn that worry into a plan to change what you are fretting about. If it's a problem you cannot change, some stress relief might be in order, or you can turn to worrying about something else that you can change. The Science of Us has more on the positive side of worrying.

(Image credit: Maxwell GS)

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