As we wrap up the Live Happy 90 Days to a Happier You challenge, art director Kim Baker writes a final blog about overcoming some of her chronic worrying.
I am pleased to say that I worry much less today than I did when I started this 90-day journey. The tools and actionable items Karen Cassiday, Ph.D., provided me to manage my worry have proved invaluable, and our conversations the last few weeks were both enjoyable and beneficial (even when we discussed difficult topics).
Today, I’m more flexible with my expectations of myself. I don’t worry about doing everything perfectly. I don’t Google my worries or poll my friends and ask for opinions. Instead, I take time to pause and breathe. I enjoy the moment more. (I’m also less irritable.)
That said, though, I’m not completely worry-free, and I have to be careful not to get too relaxed about my tendencies. I know that as soon as I stop taking time to work on myself, when I get distracted or stressed, worry and anxiety can easily creep back into my psyche. But as Karen taught me, I’m not trying to rid or “cure” myself of worry, but instead, I’m creating a buffer between me and my fear of uncertainty. I have already reduced that fear quite a bit and I’ve learned to go with the flow more, but if I don’t pay attention to my needs and take care of myself, that buffer can get smaller.
A work in progress
As someone who wants to do things the “right” way, it’s comforting knowing that I’m not trying to heal or cure myself of a particular “ailment” and that I’m not a failure if I don’t recover from being a worrier a certain way. There is going to be an ebb and flow with this process, and as I have always said, I am and will always be a work in progress. I’m not striving for perfection but, rather, looking for peace in my head and heart—and have a little fun along the way!
I am thankful for this experience with Karen, and I hope you have gained something along this journey with us.
Kim Baker is an art director at Live Happy magazine.