Parental Anxiety: How to Tame the Inner Beast Named “Worry”

It doesn’t matter whether you’re a parent to a baby, a toddler, or a teenager. Worry comes with the job description and it’s normal for parents to do so. Raise your hand if you’re guilty of slowly putting your finger under your baby’s nose just to check his/her breath while asleep? Or are you guilty of triple checking your whole house just to make sure it’s 100% baby-proof for your toddler? It’s a parent’s instinct, especially a mother’s, to worry. But when does it become harmful and too much?

Parental Anxiety usually involves excessive worrying about the potential for things to go wrong. It puts fear up on a pedesal, magnifying the danger of every little thing. It also affects one’s daily disposition. Instead of being open to new experiences, parental anxiety sets the alarm off to stop you from doing so. Today, we face worry head on and discuss the possible ways to tame this inner beast.

Parental Anxiety: How to Tame the Inner Beast Named “Worry”

Source of Worry: Thinking that an issue won’t get resolved

Taking care of a baby is nerve-wracking especially for first-time parents. Add in the loud and endless crying in the background, oh everything just gets magnified! “Is my baby feeding well? Why isn’t she sleeping through the night yet? Help! She can’t sit down on her own yet!” One source of worry is thinking that your child will never outgrow the issue at hand. Tame your worried thoughts by educating yourself of the acceptable timelines. All babies have a different developmental pace which means that if your friend’s baby is crawling already and your baby is not, it doesn’t necessarily mean that something’s wrong. Read up and learn more about your baby. This will help you stay calm and relaxed even if there’s crying in the background.

Solution: If it's not an emergency, study the acceptable timeline

 

Source of Worry: Imagining the worst...and staying there

Imagining the worst in every situation is helpful in keeping your kids safe. Your instinct will tell you to hold the hand of your child while crossing the street or to make sure that the bottled breastmilk you offer your baby is not spoiled. Worry here acts like a split second reminder for us parents that something can go wrong if we don’t act carefully. It’s healthy to acknowledge and feel the worry but only for a while. Anxiety kicks in when we replay the worst scene in our heads, bloating fear so many times over! How can we shrug it off? Ask yourself if the worst situation you’re imagining is actually realistic or not. Your creative brain might trick you into thinking that it is possible, but is it really likely to happen?

Solution: Ask yourself how realistic the worst situation actually is

 

Source of Worry: Watching too much news

We are bombarded with different types of information on a daily basis whether through the television, social media, radio, or printed materials. We see killings, robbery, and all types of crimes reported in the news, making the incidents feel closer to home than it actually is. There’s nothing wrong with watching the news, but when it starts to affect and restrict your movements, then maybe you just had enough of it. Clear your head by going on a media fast. Close your television, logout of your social media accounts, and just rest your mind of all the worry.

Solution: Go on a media fast

 

Source of Worry: Being idle and feeling lethargic

The mind wanders off when the body is idle. If you observe your thought patterns, you’re more likely to worry when you’re not moving. Increase your happy hormones through exercise and shake off that dark cloud hovering on top of your head. Be intentional about it by preparing your workout clothes the night before. You’ll feel better and will have a clearer headspace after.

Solution: Prepare your workout clothes the night before and commit to moving

 

Source of Worry: Isolating and being alone most of the time

Being in isolation or living alone can affect your mental health. Instead of being able to unload everything that’s on your mind, you tend to bottle it up and think about it over and over again. Reach out to a friend and don’t allow Mr. Worry to grow bigger and bigger. This way, you’ll get a different perspective on the matter that’s been bothering you. As they say, a problem shared is a problem halved.

Solution: Reach out to your closest friends or family

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