Deflate your worries

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in Office Management

Chronic worriers tend to fret themselves into immobility. While occasional worry can help you gain alertness, too much anxiety can deplete your energy and leave you gloomy and hopeless.

You’re going to worry whether you like it or not. So apply these tools to make it work for you, not against you:

Write it down. Impose some rationality. Jot down the facts, list “knowns” and “unknowns” and identify questions that need answers. By gathering this information, you can approach the situation more systematically.

Stop repetitive “worry cycles.” At its most destructive, worry replays itself in your head. You revisit the reasons why you’re anxious—without coming up with any new insights, action plans or solutions.

Treat worry as a task on your daily to-do list. Once you undergo a round of fretting, check off that item and move on. Resist the urge to double back and restart the worry cycle.

Surround yourself with people. It’s easy to worry when you’re alone. That’s why you should combat aimless anxiety by diving into group activities, such as collaborating on a team project. Also make sure your time off the job is socially productive. By staying busy, you leave little time to retreat into your worry shell.

Set time limits. If you must worry, don’t indulge yourself for hours on end. Set aside a time, say five minutes, to concentrate solely on your apprehension. Set a timer. When the alarm sounds, banish all worries.

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