Posted in Did you know?

Does December include Worry???

So it is December 6th,  , Montreal, Quebec, Canada…the end of a long day for many.  

 I cannot continue my post without noting the significance of this particular date as well.   It is a sad day when one remembers the needless bloodshed of 14 innocent Montreal university students…and many more casualties all over the world…many who still are  marked by this tragedy.  Before reading on my much lighter topic…please take a moment to think of these women…

Today,  it was a snowy day.  I am pretty darn sure skiers, snowmobilers and children were quite excited at the sight of this blanket of whiteness. (brrrrrrrrrr)

However, many people on their drive home in the Montreal area were bogged down by treacherous roads and nervous drivers.   The first real snowfall on a work day can be daunting.  I am sure driving was a challenge and white knuckles clutched on their steering wheels in anticipation of something terrible  will happen.

 The media also hype up drivers hours before their drive home…it is to warn the fast, over confident, overzealous drivers (we do have a few here and there in Quebec)…but what it actually does is psyche up the regular drivers into becoming way too nervous. 

In essence it all up adds to worry =anticipating & imagining the worst…

While people were struggling to get to their homes; picking up their children at daycares; and finally fixing supper hours later, where was I in all this mahem?  In zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz land.   I woke up this morning, feeling yucky (I shall spare you the details); had a cup of tea, called my employer to say I was not up to par for work and went back to the comfort of my pillow top cloud mattress…ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh and attempted to read…not for long…

I thought to myself, “ I will lie my head down for just a few minutes…just to get the sand out of my eyes”…but Mr  Sandman {or the Sandperson} just would NOT give up!  The sprinkles of sand amounted to snippets of dreams…that I could not tell if I was actually in REM sleep or awake and experiencing these mini clips of activities. 

I daresay, I was quite busy all day and evening…to awaken in the late evening and realize I was in a different world than most of my counterparts  facing the wintry roads.  I actually am pleased that I was spared an extra thing to worry about.

I realize that perhaps my recent slumber experience was the results of a virus of some sort which merited some bed rest.  Hmmm, not exactly a time of the year to be out of commission.  No sirree, it is a busy time with so much to think about, so much to prepare, so much to do…

That said, this brings me to the subject of worry for anyone all over the world who may be impacted by this particular month…December.

What does December mean to you and the approaching of the holidays?  

–         Meeting with family and friends should be something to look forward to, non?  The approaching of a special holiday whereby you feel you MUST be in contact with some people you have not spoken to for months and in some cases, the awkwardness or in some cases,  the phoniness of it all.  Ah, that would worry anyone.

 –         But what about the ones who are happy to see family and friends…what’s keeping their minds filled with needless angst?  Presents to purchase?  Money not had? Cleaning the house to host all these people?  Baking ahead of time in preparation for the holidays?  Worry about the weather…will friends and family be able to make it to your place safely? 

–          Is it the end of the fiscal year and balancing a bank account that just does NOT balance and may disappoint many family members counting on you?  

–         Does it mean the nearing of the end of a contract? Will that contract be renewed and how can you rejoice the holidays if you do not know if you will be collecting an employment cheque or an unemployment cheque? 

–          For some, it is the nearing the end of a difficult year that you hope will not repeat itself due the trying times you have just gone through.

 But then again, does this all add up to one basic word?  W O R R Y! 

Worry sounds healthier and less clinical than anxiety, stress or post-traumatic stress, does it not?   I am certainly not making light of any of these clinical terms that certainly have their place but then again, I am NOT a psychiatrist, and I wish to keep my convos with ye all in neutral and light mode…just something to think about…or to think with the shake of the head, “Yeah, that’s it?!”  or “NO friggin way, lady!” or “I have noticed….”  If I have succeeded in getting a reaction or have you thinking…then this blog has accomplished its purpose.

So when you worry, how does that affect you? 

Do you get through the day fine and then worry by tossing and turning in your bed? 

Do you find yourself distracted at work or at play (with your young persons in your life) or your significant others? 

Do you find that you blow up at the drop of a hat or a pin…??

 Are you forgetting more and more lately and finding yourself making little sticky notes to remember everything…(Well, I have a few tips on that one so you can appear with it and not displaying the first signs of dementia). 

Or are you finding you are simply STUCK…inertia has blended into your whole being.  Inertia to you and laziness to the untrained observer. 

Did you know that nearly 99% of the things you worry about never actually happen like you have imagined?

Did you know that it is your thoughts that actually cause the signs we just listed above and there are no facts to support or warrant the worries?  Now THAT is pretty darn frustrating since worries takes up how many hours in your life… a lot for some, too much for others and very little for the lucky ones.

I often suggest to youths who phone in for support about their anxiety…to set aside their worry. To actually write down some of the things they are worried about on a sheet of paper or get one of those little notebooks from the dollar store.  Once it is all written down…set it aside…in a bag, under your bed (if it is bedtime)…and then tell yourself, “I will get back to this worrying in a little while…I am not ignoring these important worries but need to put them aside so I can…” sleep, prepare dinner, get ready for school or work,  drive safely to pick up my kids at school, etc. etc and etc.

It is delaying the time to worry…putting it off to a later time.  It is similar to cutting down a habit like smoking or eating sweets…rather than prohibiting a habit (which makes it all the more tantalizing) you are postponing the behaviour.  Does this work?  Well, sure but with lots and oodles of practice. 

So what works for you?  What has not worked for you? 

Does it help talking to a friend?  Don’t you want to scream when someone comes out with a logical debate?  You already know it is irrational lots of the times…to be judged or patronized sure does not help but makes you sink deeper into your world of “No one understands how miserable and mature…cuz it is mature to worry, right?”  Weren’t you told growing up that kids are happy go lucky human beings because they do NOT have a worry in the world.  Not so!  They probably do but they do not DWELL on it like us mature, intelligent species!!

Why worry about something you have no control over?  Please this is NOT a rhetorical question.  I actually would love to know.  Is it genetic to worry?  My mom drove me nuts with her worrying and her mother even more!!! Is it learned? 

Well, I am sure you all have your own valid reasons to worry and who the heck am I or anyone else to judge?  Our children become smug when they hear about our concerns…partly because they don’t want you to worry not because they judge you. 

I have come to realise this in the past 10 years.  As my children have become adults and moved away in their own homes, I recognized that I was doing exactly what my mom did…once I am not busy, relaxing in bed…the wheels of worry start to turn…the wheels of absurd thoughts grease those wheels to perpetuate that draining process of unfounded and irrational premonitions .

I remember apologizing t my mother a few years back for not taking her “worrying” seriously.  What a humbling experience to finally “get it”.  That was a precious profound and touching moment for both of us…no words necessary…just knowing…the complicity we now shared.  I am not saying I am proud to practice this behaviour but I am pleased I connected on this level with my mom

It is sort of like a badge of honour for many adults: managers and business owners, …mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, grandparents, aunties, uncles, …caregivers in general to carry this responsibility…if only they and I could see this as a burden rather than an value. 

If you agree in part with this post…cool!  If you do not agree and have other ideas or strategies that work for you…(not for your clients please…share personally…I have lots of ideas that work for clients…but the shoe does not always fit moi)…then comment and share…enlighten me.

Until my next convo…be well…sleep well…and please do drive safely so I don’t have to worry about you guys(wink – wink)




Tips on making “to do lists” so you just do NOT forget. 

In my smart phone, I have  a section in my memo list  with several  titles:

Books read (yes I forget from time to time which thriller I read)

Books to read  so the next time you happen to be at a bookstore or library, you have a list handy.

Groceries (I add an item when I notice something is amiss so when I actually get to the store I buy what I really need)

Hr stuff ( I add any changes in my work week such as time off, overtime, sickness)  That way I don’t have to worry when it comes time to fill in my time sheet.

To buy: Things I know I need but never get around to buy…if and when I get to a store, I check this section to see if there is an item I need with proper type and size included .

ME: these are personal notes on travel confirmations, email accounts, account numbers and hints for passwords cuz there are way too many things to remember now that we live in this cyber and digital so called SMART world .

Why does this method look less frazzled than all those sticky notes all over the house, door frames, etc.? It actually looks cool and smart.  So, as you are in the isle of cereal at the grocery store, you are perusing through you smart phone looking cool like a teenagerJ

Oh, and not to worry about forgetting to input all these notes…just send yourself an email and cut and paste to your Memo list later on. 

This may seem way too complicated and time consuming for some…then work out your own method to manage this madness of forgetting…it works for me and that is what counts… explore your strategies.

Interesting reads and viewing:

Cute video for the parent, grandparent or just plain caring worrying adult:

Cute magazine produced in UK:

Canadian Mental Health Ass. :



A little bit about moi: I am a mom, a nana, a sister, a woman, a friend, a human being…a youth counsellor, Family Life Educator. I have been working in the helping profession for over 25 years and volunteered in various capacities from youths to seniors. Tournesol is my nom de plume for haiku and other Japanese form poetry here at Tournesoldansunjardin I hope you enjoy reading through my daily waka. I also have another blog "Stop the Stigma" where I may stand on my soapbox now and then and hope it will become a place to drop in and share or comment on issues important to you. In that vein this could be a great way to learn from each other. Namaste!

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