I am and always have been a worrier. As a child, I worried about everything. My mom gave me a wooden worry-bird which I kept on the dresser in my bedroom. It’s purpose was to worry for me so I wouldn’t have to.
As a teenager, I became a good but not great tennis player. What held me back was my mental attitude. I’d be playing well and then would start worrying. What if my serve fell apart? What if I started missing forehand shots down the line? Sure enough, it became a self-fulfilling prophecy.
It takes me a long time to make decisions. I look at each side of the issue and worry about the consequences. Then after I make a decision, I worry if I made the right one.
The only positive part about being a worrier is that it turned me into a good planner. I’ve always been able to anticipate problems, think through alternatives and come up with contingency plans.
As a kid, I was always attracted to Mad magazine. What greater appeal that Alfred E. Neuman and his, “What me worry?” I envied that attitude.
Now that I’m older, I’ve tempered my worrying during the day. But my worries still accumulate at night, and I’ll pop awake with my mind going a mile-a-minute about all kinds of problems.
It would sure be nice it that darned worry-bird just did its job.