Being Arthritic Warriors I am sure most of us indulge in Hypothetical Worry!

It’s a normal human tendency I guess, but only becomes uncontrolled when we focus excessively on hypothetical worries instead of realistic worries especially pertaining to our medical condition.

The ‘what if’ thoughts are typically about things we don’t have much control over and have noticed that this goes on a rampage if not controlled.

Practical worries concern things you do have control over, and they can help you be more proactive. If you’re very uncomfortable with uncertainty, you’re likely prone to hypothetical worry and spend a lot of time focused on the future instead of the present.

It’s hard to deal with the ‘what ifs’ and ‘should’ but you have to be kind to yourself. It’s taken me years to be able to manage them and of course I don’t always succeed, still struggling sometimes but I’ve got a lot better at letting the thoughts come and go without getting too involved with them.

Living with (RA) pain can feel like the glass is half empty. But negative thinking and expecting worse case scenarios can make your experience of pain worse. You may think, “My fingers are getting swollen. Soon they’ll make it too hard to cook the meals I love or paint the canvas. I should just give up cooking /painting entirely now!”  This type of thinking is called catastrophizing. The individual predicts and obsesses over a negative event or situation. Then, he or she decides that if it does happen, it will lead to the worst possible outcome, keeping no room for positivity.

Sometimes pain can become all-consuming and can prevent you from doing the things you enjoy, so in effect you may start living a pain-centered life.

It’s also important not to blame yourself if you struggle with these emotions as it can be a natural reaction to your situation. What is important is that you recognize when you may be catastrophizing and make efforts to stop this line of thinking for your health and overall wellbeing.

People with arthritis have to learn to successfully manage its impact on their physical, functional, social and psychological status, a process termed self-management.

Will be sharing at length my personal journey on this topic in my next uploads…

Till then…do remember for every minute you worry you loose sixty seconds of happiness in the present moment and also remember today is the tomorrow you worried about yesterday!

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