Feeling My Phantom Worry Limb

This past year, I’ve become more aware of where my thoughts wander. And where they don’t wander anymore.

My improved self-awareness means I notice how my thoughts behave differently now than they did before all this hard self-work. I take notice of my options and choices when moments of decision bubble up to the surface of my everyday. This is the way I’m taking my power back against the anxieties I’ve had all my life. You know, the anxieties that ruled my every waking moment while I unconsciously allowed them to do so.Phantom worry limb post on

Let me explain what I’m saying and how my life is different. During my days, as I try to accomplish the daily tasks of a Mom and a blogger/artist/writer, I’ll suddenly become aware that my anxiety is missing. I can hear how my previous thoughts would want to worry me about how and when everything will work out. With the what ifs and the myriad of possible outcomes. About my competency and about others’ thoughts about me. It’s like having a phantom worry limb. I recognize where it should be but it’s just not there. Now I choose to focus on doing the task at hand and completing it first. Instead of reliving the anxious mode which feels like I’m falling into a bottomless anxious pit, I’m choosing to keep my nose to the grindstone and am plowing through.

Being present and in the moment is the perfect foil to anxiety. That and being as proactive about everything as I possibly can. Planning and scheduling ahead helps immensely. Now there’s no procrastination being used to bring on anxiety. I often do things before they even get on a list.

Fear can not exist in the same place as gratitude. And as you are present to feel that gratitude, you will not be in the past or the future where that fear lurks.

Phantom worry limb post on

In this way, I’m actually feeling better about my accomplishments as opposed to having my pride robbed or kept from me as I fret about an outcome which I’ll never be in control of. Now is the only time I’ll ever have. The best use of my time is to be willing to trust my decisions and to be here doing the best job I can and to be present for my children.

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4 Responses to “Feeling My Phantom Worry Limb”

  1. Laura says:

    Really great post today. You rock!

    • Shalagh says:

      Oh Thank you so very much Laura. I’m always so relieved when someone reads something. And to hear that it rocks is the highest compliment. Or me rocking. That too.
      Love to You faraway friend,

  2. Beth says:

    I just wrote a piece about phantom worry. I don’t think many people have heard of it.

    • Shalagh says:

      Yes Beth that is interesting and I think your story is very funny and you described it well. Also funny how you and your husband had the same worry at the same time. My least favorite weather occurrence is the wind. I’m always twitching because I too am waiting for something to fall or break!
      Thanks for stopping by fellow worrier and blogger.

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