One of my daughter’s brilliant strategy as a mother is the intelligent use of the timer.
Kid: “I don’t want to brush my teeth now!!!!”
Parent: “Okay, dear, you can play with Legos for five more minutes and when the timer goes off, it’s time to brush your teeth.”
Not foolproof, but works pretty well.
So I’d like to suggest the intelligent use of the Worry Timer. When you wake up or start reading the news or just get into some bad feedback loop in your head and feel like we’re all doomed and everything will just keep getting worse until it gets even worse, it’s a good time to set the Worry Timer. Give yourself permission to go way down the rabbit hole without a flashlight and seriously entertain every doomsday fantasy, listen to the worst predictions, read the news item about white supremacists commanding anyone infected to bottle their saliva to spray on non-white people as their duty to God, but promise to stop when the timer goes off. I suggest five-minutes maximum and then get on with your day.
Picture it. Over and over,
“We’re all gonna die!!! The world’s gonna end!! The stock market will crash and my kids can’t afford to pay for my funeral!! They’re gonna postpone November elections!!!! WE’RE ALL GONNA………… “Beep beep beep beep!
“My, isn’t it a lovely day out. Look at the buds on the wisteria! Spring is on its way.”