Worry about the future often involves other people. Think about it. If you are worrying about something, it might be because you want someone to behave in a certain manner. When I worry about my adult children and their wellbeing, I often realize I have this expectation about what they should be doing. Instead of letting go of that expectation, I hold on tight, and worry.
When I worry about asking my boss for a raise, I am worried about her reaction, her possible rejection. I am not worried about my behavior, because I know I deserve that raise. So increasing our awareness of what and who we worry about can ease worry as we recognize we cannot control other people’s behavior, only our own.
When we form an expectation about behavior we are usually attached to outcome. Do you expect your partner, child, friend, whoever, to do something, say something, or behave in a certain way? Can you step back, and realize how invested you are in this expectation? Do you have an attachment to it? Does worry comes up if you think your expectations won’t be met?
To drop worry, let go expectation and attachment to other people’s behavior. Not easy. Try it, just once, to start. Ultimately, each person enacts their own behavior and is responsible for it and the consequences afterward. If we stop to think about it, we really have no control over our partners, our (adult) child, or our friends’ behaviors. Even though we would like to think we do…