July 7, 2020

What is Toxic Worrying?

What is Toxic Worrying?                                              Lady Worrying

Worry is a natural emotion and, in some situations, it can help us be more productive. However, if you find yourself excessively worrying over everything in your life, it can have a significant negative impact on your health and wellbeing.

Toxic worrying can really take over your day to day life. If left untreated, it can also cause you to become sick. So, what exactly is toxic worrying and how can it impact your life? Below, you’ll discover everything you need to know.

What is it?

Toxic worrying is where your worries take over your life. You’ll worry excessively, which in turn leads to a number of health and wellbeing issues.

With normal worries, you’ll be aware of them, but you’ll still manage to control the situation. With toxic worries, it’s like they replay over and over in a cycle. They are continuous and they actually prevent you from taking action to solve the problem.

So, toxic worrying is a type of worry that you can’t control, and it often takes over your life.

Why does it happen?

There are a lot of things that can contribute to toxic worrying. The most common include:

  • Feeling vulnerable and insecure
  • Lack of control
  • Negativity breeds negativity
  • Anxiety disorders
  • Stress

These are just some of the main causes of toxic worry. Feeling insecure and vulnerable is one of the most common. The more vulnerable you feel, the more you’ll worry about the things around you. Similarly, if you feel like you don’t have control over a situation, it can lead to a lot of distress, frustration and worry.

Of course, there is also the fact that negativity breeds negativity. So, the more you worry, the bigger those worries will become. Toxic worrying often starts out as healthy worry. Then, the more you focus and concentrate on your worries, the bigger they start to become until they eventually take over.

Toxic worrying can also be a sign of a more severe anxiety disorder. Worry is a common symptom of anxiety and if left untreated, it can quickly take over your life.

Finally, stress can play a major role in worry. The more stressed you become, the worse your worries will be.

How can it impact your life?

The trouble with toxic worrying, is that it can have a drastic impact on your health and wellbeing. The longer the worry continues, the worse the side effects will be.

You’ll start to notice your physical health is slowly deteriorating. Toxic worrying leads to issues with headaches, nausea, dizziness and stomach aches. Many people are unaware that high levels of worry and stress can have a drastic impact on their physical health. It reduces the effectiveness of the immune system, leading to a lot more minor illnesses.

As well as the physical symptoms, you’ll commonly have trouble sleeping. You may struggle to fall asleep, or you may have trouble staying asleep. The minute you wake up you’ll also find your mind goes straight to worry.

Fatigue is another common symptom. When you spend so much time worrying, it starts to wear you out mentally. This can leave you feeling constantly tired, particularly if you’re also having trouble sleeping.

In extreme cases, toxic worrying can cause you to avoid things. You could start to avoid going out for example, or you avoid certain situations to reduce the worry. When it starts to interfere with your daily life, that’s when you need to look into managing it.

These are just some of the ways toxic worrying can impact your life. The longer it is left untreated, the worse it will become. Therefore, identifying the signs of toxic worry and taking steps to combat the issue is crucial for your health and wellbeing.


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Dr. Monique Belton

Executive Coach and Clinical Psychologist, Monique Belton, Ph.D. helps empower people to create their dreams.

Dr. Monique Belton

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