The spring of the year seems to be a time of change for many people. If they are going to move or change jobs, spring is a good time. Schools end, summer jobs start, graduates are jumping from academic pursuits to on-the-job challenges. And with all that, comes anxiety. I have had conversations with at least four people—three of whom are younger than me, on the topic of anxiety just this week.
How do we eliminate anxiety? Especially when we are a country of such monumental change…all the time? Personally, I hate change so much I wear my shoes until they have holes in their holes and I keep my toothbrushes until the last bristles fall out. Do I have anxiety anyway? Of course! Who doesn’t?
I also have a philosophy about anxiety. (It’s not really mine…I read it somewhere.) With the increase of our mobility as a society, our anxiety has intensified. When our ancestors roamed the world, they didn’t worry about change, they worried about enough food and adequate shelter. Once societies developed, they worried about family ties and social traditions. Today, we worry about all of those things plus we have the added need to search our souls, keep expanding, take care of everyone else, excel at our jobs and all the while wondering how to avoid trashing the planet or blowing it up.
The good news is that today we are smart enough to provide aids when the anxiety gets too overwhelming. Everything from talk therapy to physical and medical aides can help give an edge over anxiety and most intelligent, educated people make use of them when they need them.
The underlying issue of change leading to anxiety is the same, though. We all worry about making the right move with every decision. The only trouble is, anxiety doesn’t help us in making the decision. In fact, it can stop us from making the decisions that are best for us.
I’ve spent so much time in my life letting my anxiety get in my own way when it comes to the things that I want. And do you know what I’ve discovered? That my anxiety doesn’t improve when I refuse to make decisions and refuse to change…in fact, in many cases in my life it has been worse—because I failed to “choose the road less taken.”
This column isn’t too humorous, but at this time of graduation when so many are making choices which are so important to their futures and when we all face a plethora of changes, I thought it might be worth mentioning that we all have anxiety and it isn’t always easy to control. It will never go away, so the secret is to learn to control it—by whatever means you can—so that it doesn’t control you. Take it from someone who knows, anxiety and uncertainty can take many disguises, but if it can, it will try to take over…don’t let it. Go out and get everything you want and let your anxiety worry about maintaining itself!
Have a great week—I promise I’ll be funny next time!
© Jackie Wells-Fauth and Drops In the Well, 2016. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jackie Wells-Fauth and Drops In The Well with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.