worry thoughts | Somewhere in Middle America

Here’s a confession: I am plagued by worry thoughts. I worry about my husband’s job. I worry about my career. I worry about my misbehaving dog, about our finances, about when we will start a family, about the health and happiness of my family back East, about the strength of my friendships and more.

Only with a tiny handful of my closest friends do I really open up and confess my deepest worries. Normal behavior, right? You don’t have to complain about life to everybody you meet.

But my problem is that when I’m neck-deep in worry (and frequently I am), I have a hard time finding joyful — or even banal — things to talk about. So I shut up. I don’t call friends, even my close ones, and I don’t call family. I don’t want to burden them with my stress, so I don’t talk to them about the things that are bothering me…or about anything. I basically shield them from all aspects of my life.

I know that what I do is harmful to my relationship and maybe even to my health. I need to keep the lines of communication between my family and friends open at all times. Even if I have nothing positive to say, I can still listen. Maybe they have exciting news they want to share. Maybe they have frustrations they’d like to vent. Better yet, I need to get over my fear that I’d be burdening my friends and family by talking about my worries… and that I’m being judged for having these types of thoughts.

What do you do when you are bogged down by worry thoughts? Do you share them with family and friends or do you keep them to yourself? Are you able to engage in lighthearted chatter when your mind is focused on whatever it is you’re fearing?

(image source, via pinkshirtsandcarwrecks)