Does your brain turn on more when you go to bed? Instead of drifting off, your brain starts replaying every mistake from the day before 😟 or listing out all of the things you need to do tomorrow. Before long, you’re wide awake and feeling pretty frustrated.

why does this happen?

Worry is a natural brain 🧠⚡ function that helps us solve problems and plan for the future. For many busy people, you’re running around doing things during the day. When you go to bed, it might be the first time you have some quiet, so your brain has a backlog of worries that it starts to process. But you’re not really in a problem-solving mode right now, so this unstructured worry-time spirals out of control. It’s unproductive and causes anxiety.

proactive worrying

The solution to this problem is to process worries constructively during the day. If you frequently forget to slow down and end up worrying at night, schedule 30 minutes (or whatever length feels right for you) to write in a journal during the day.

On a sheet of paper, list each worry and write ✍️ :

✔️ Is there a solution? If so, that’s great, just set aside some time to work on that.

A lot of worries don’t have a solution. For them, write:

✔️ How am I already managing the situation? Is there something I should give myself credit for doing?

✔️ What are some ways I can cope with the situation?

✔️ What are some ways I can manage this worry if it comes up again in the future?

And if you notice yourself worrying outside of this time, that’s normal! Just remind yourself that you’ve already thought about it, and you’ll have time to worry again tomorrow. 😊


The Harvard Health Blog. (2017, October 13). Write Your Anxieties Away. Retrieved March 21, 2021