Just 100+ Anxious Thoughts I Had Today“Hey, do you think you have cancer?” —My brain
Anxious thoughts and I go way back—basically to the womb. As a kid, I’d ruminate on deep stuff until I got a stomach ache. I’d lie awake trying to convince my anxiety-filled brain that my heart and lungs would still work while I slept or obsessing over where the hell we all went when we died or imagining rotting in a casket all alone. I was 7.
As I grew up, anxiety tagged along, vacationing on my shoulder in tiny shades and a sun hat. It’d whisper things in my ear like, “What if you choke on a Werther's Original and die?” and “What if you don’t die, but the Werther’s Original is stuck in your throat forever?” and “What if you die before Josh from Drake & Josh dies?” and “What if HE dies from a Werther's Original because you’re thinking about him dying?” and, of course, “Your headache is probably, definitely a tumor.” You know, normal and adorable adolescent thoughts (my existential dread and death anxiety were cool like that).
When I’m not worrying, I’m worried that I’m not worrying. Take the night I got engaged, for instance. We had dinner on the beach to celebrate, and, as soon as I got back to the Airbnb, I felt like I had to tear the excitement off of me and, well, worry. So I thought, What if you don’t make it to the wedding and everyone has to plan your funeral instead? Lit.
I’ve tried my best to understand why my anxiety lingers, and I’m happy to report back from therapy (shoutout to Becky The Therapist) that anxious thoughts like mine often stem from not being able to handle the ever-mysterious, omnipresent Dementor that is uncertainty. Oh, and also generalized anxiety disorder, which I have.
While I’m still trying to de-program my brain from believing I can control what happens in the future by thinking and re-thinking and re-re-thinking about something, I’m very aware that worrying really just trashes the present. And because I can’t necessarily stop anxiety from whispering
sweet nothings horrible shit in my ear, I’m learning to not take that voice so seriously—even when my thoughts get dark.
If you can relate, this is for you, my constantly concerned crew. My worried warriors. Here is a (somehow not exhaustive) list of anxious thoughts that entered my brain over the course of a day. Hopefully it makes you feel a little better about your own anxious internal monologue.
Mere moments after waking up.
You only kissed your fiancé twice before he left for work. Are you sure that was enough? Why are you worrying about how many times you kissed him? He’s coming back after his shift at the firehouse. You’ll see him soon.
...Or will you? What if he’s caught in a fire today? What if he decides not to come back home because he realizes how fucked up your brain is?
Did you set an alarm so you’re not late for work?
Is the dog still breathing?
*Checks underneath the covers to see if my dog, Casey, is in fact breathing*
While driving to doggy daycare.
Wow, Casey pulled on you a lot this weekend at the beer garden. She might have dislocated your shoulder. Correction: She DEFINITELY dislocated your shoulder.
OK, so your shoulder’s intact, but what if it’s dislocated and you just don’t feel any pain? What if you move your arm and your shoulder just pops right out of the socket? What if you really don’t have an arm? Like, she ripped it right off and this is a phantom arm? Is that a thing?
*Waves arm up and down*
Do you think the person in the car right there just saw you do that? Oh my God, you probably looked so stupid.
Sitting down to start work for the day.
Feel that? Your head sort of hurts in that weird spot again. Hey, remember that time you got a concussion from a refrigerator? You hit your head pretty hard. This headache could be from when that fridge attacked you.
Why does your head slope down like that? The refrigerator definitely made a huge dent.
*Feels head again*
Has your head always been shaped like that? Remember when you went to the hospital after hitting your head a different time (LOL loser) and that doctor made a face after feeling your head?
Do you think if you ever went bald that people would be able to see the huge dent in your head? Do you think you’ll get cancer and need chemo and THEN be bald? God, your skull shouldn’t be shaped like that. Should you get it checked out? Sure, Becky The Therapist said not to make doctors’ appointments out of anxiety anymore, but she doesn’t have to know.
*Feels head again*
Cancer. It’s definitely cancer.
While searching for wedding dress inspo online during lunch.
You’re going to have so many doctors’ appointments between now and your wedding. Think about it: It’s a year and a half away, which means you’ll need two rounds of annual visits since you’re due for those soon. That’s not going to be fun for you. You’ll have your annual visits with your gyno, your primary doctor, and the dermatologist. Then, you’ll probably go to the dentist a few times. And who knows what can happen?!
What if bloodwork turns up abnormal? What if the derm finds a weird mole? What if your headaches come back big time and you need a CT scan? What if you actually feel really sick and go to the hospital and find out you have leukemia?
Do you know how expensive it’s going to be when you have leukemia and have to pay for treatment? If you don’t get leukemia before the wedding, you could still get it later, like when you’re raising kids. You could die before they reach elementary school.
You DID have an elevated white blood cell count two years ago. Remember that doctor? He said you were basically fine and then rambled on about some of his patients who thought going vegan would help cure them.
Do you think you should go vegan? Do you think he said you were fine, but you actually aren’t and have been living with leukemia all this time?
Remember when you hit your head on that refrigerator, though?
Walking down the stairs.
Hey, your socks are slippery! Slow down! You could fall and crack your head open! Did you just fall down the stairs? Are you SURE you didn’t fall and hit your head?
*Pauses when I’ve reached the bottom to convince myself I’m standing on two feet*
Oooo remember that fridge incident? Should you just walk around everywhere with a helmet on?
How many times have you hit your head in your life? What if Mom dropped you as a baby and you were concussed early on? Maybe that’s why your tiny head looked light-bulb-shaped in pictures. Do other people have light-bulb-shaped heads?
Getting into the car to go food shopping.
Damn, that engagement ring looks nice today, but are any of the diamonds missing?
It looks fine, but...I don’t know.
*Checks again and counts individual stones out loud*
Cool, cool. You could get into a crash while driving to Stop & Shop. At least your hand will look pretty when you die.
When WILL you die? Do you think it’ll happen today or tomorrow? What if it happens suddenly and you literally just don’t know that you died? Would you rather know it’s about to happen?
Why do people have to die anyway? There are people dying right now. And now. And now. You really don’t want to rot in the ground.
Shampooing my hair in the shower.
What if your sister dies before she can be your maid of honor? What if there’s some freak accident and you get a call one night that she’s in the hospital and she dies? You’d have to dedicate a speech to her at the wedding reception. And everyone would be crying, coming up to you saying how they wish she could be there.
Can you imagine her not existing anymore? Life would just keep going without her, and you’d lose your best friend in the entire world. One day that’ll happen to you too. You’ll die, and life will go on. Can you imagine ?
*Cries into conditioner bottle*
Both of you will die one day. What if you die first? What if she dies first? Do you think you’ll come back as ghosts? And will you be wearing the clothes you died in, or can you pick the clothes you wear for eternity? What would you wear?! What if you turn into a ghost and you’re just watching everyone do life without you? Holy shit, that would be so weird.
Remember when you concussed yourself with a refrigerator? Are you sure you haven’t been dead this whole time?
Walking past my bedroom closet.
You going to check that out? There could be a murderer in there. You don’t want to go to bed later and then the murderer comes out from the closet while you’re sleeping.
Phew, OK. But what if the murderer is actually a ghost and you can’t see them?
Heading to the bathroom to get ready for bed.
That’s a fucking HUGE centipede right here!
*Frantically tries to vacuum it up, but the centipede runs through a crack in the paint*
Jesus Christ. Now that thing’s going to remember you tried to end its life, and it’ll come for you while you’re sleeping. It could quadruple in size and come eat you! A giant centipede could do some major damage!
Here lies Sam: writer, worrier, centipede food.
Wondermind does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Any information published on this website or by this brand is not intended as a replacement for medical advice. Always consult a qualified health or mental health professional with any questions or concerns about your mental health.