It’s not easy being someone who worries about everything.
As if there aren’t enough terrible things happening in the world to genuinely lose sleep over, if you’re cursed with the worrying gene, you’ll be all too familiar with the panic and fear that comes with just about anything.
It doesn’t matter how any times people tell you to relax, calm down, take deep breaths, you can’t help it.
In fact, that makes it worse. Because then you worry that you’re being annoying.
Here are 23 things that every worrier will relate to…
1. Constantly feeling like everyone is annoyed at you. Even though you’ve done nothing wrong.
2. Relaxing is not ‘relaxing’. Relaxing makes you feel like you are wasting your precious time.
3. And on the subject of time, why does it go so fast? Oh no, we’re all dying.
4. Lying in bed awake at night with adrenaline pumping through your veins, thinking entirely productive thoughts like “Did I leave the iron on?!” “I wonder if I’m infertile?” “What is the meaning of life?” and so on.
5. Your first instinct is to react with panic to most situations, before giving yourself the chance to think rationally.
6. Which leads to unnecessarily traumatic situations.
Such as: rifling through discarded bin bags full of rotting food with your bare hands, after convincing yourself that you’ve thrown out all of this year’s Christmas cards with the gift vouchers and money still in them.
Turns out, you didn’t. The money was sat on your bedside table. Where you put it.
7. “Oh god. My bosses have just gone into a meeting. I bet it’s about me. It must be. What else could it possibly be. Oh god, I’m getting sacked. It’s fine, I’ll go. I’ll leave voluntarily. Please, don’t sack me. Oh god, oh god, oh god.”
8. These thoughts. Constantly. About everything.
9. Finding out your friends are having a private WhatsApp conversation and immediately assuming that it’s because THEY ALL HATE YOU.
10. Forgetting to call people back because you’re so busy worrying about other things. And then feeling guilty for days about what a rubbish person you are.
11. That feeling of sheer, blinding panic you get when you’re convinced (for the eighth time that day) that you’ve lost your phone/keys/wallet/handbag.
12. You usually haven’t. But it’s the same feeling of terror every time.
13. Replaying awkward social interactions over and over again in your head, until they become almost nonsensical.
14. Spending a lot of time worrying about never achieving anything significant in life. Mediocrity is calling. Whyyyyyyy.
15. Everything going well in your life? Brilliant. Or so you’d think. Not for us worriers. We’re constantly wondering when everything is going to go wrong.
16. Never quite feeling like you’ve done a good enough job of anything, ever. Despite putting in 100% every time.
17. Feeling annoyed when people say things like this to you:
DO YOU THINK I DON’T KNOW THAT?! I’m not an idiot. I’m just a neurotic mess.
18. Gut-wrenching, unbearable FEAR after every single night out.
19. Texting everyone you know apology messages, even though you weren’t very drunk and did nothing wrong.
20. Constantly fending off people’s suggestions to ‘meditate’, ‘switch your phone off at night time’ and ‘try doing something therapeutic, like a jigsaw’.
21. Also, don’t tell me to get a colouring in book again, please. It’s not for me. It won’t ‘calm me down’. I’ve got too much worrying to do, thank you.
22. Often, your brain feels like this…
23. You usually feel absolutely exhausted from all the worrying. (Maybe I should try that jigsaw after all…)
Sorry Bobby McFerrin, but it’s not as easy as you think.