Set Aside Time To Worry To Reduce Stress And Anxiety

It may seem silly, but if you pencil in time to worry, you may be able to cope with problems better. It’s easier to postpone worrying than it is to stop worrying altogether, the theory goes.

Photo remixed from an original by ASurroca.

MSNBC reports that in a study using stimulus control therapy, patients with anxiety, stress and depressive symptoms learned to associate a specific time and place with worrying. When they caught themselves worrying, they were taught to postpone worrying and focus instead on the task at hand. When the scheduled “worry time” came around, they used that time to try to solve the problems they worried about.

This sort of compartmentalising of their worries helped reduce anxiety and stress. Although it was a small sample (62 participants with some dropping out), the technique sounds promising (better to worry for a focused 30 minutes a day than over an exhausting 18 hours, I think).

We’ve recently seen stimulus control therapy applied to training ourselves to fall asleep faster, and the MSNBC article points out how these techniques are used for curbing overeating as well. These sorts of mind hacks might pave the way to better health.

Scheduling ‘worry time’ may help you fret less [MSNBC]

The Cheapest NBN 50 Plans

Here are the cheapest plans available for Australia’s most popular NBN speed tier.

At Lifehacker, we independently select and write about stuff we love and think you'll like too. We have affiliate and advertising partnerships, which means we may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. BTW – prices are accurate and items in stock at the time of posting.


One response to “Set Aside Time To Worry To Reduce Stress And Anxiety”

Leave a Reply