Study: Worrying Can Take 5 Years Off Life


WORK STRESSFrom work, to the kids — people have a lot to worry about.

Even small stuff cause us to worry — for up to two hours a day, according to a new study out of the UK.

When you do the math, that adds up to as many as as five years off your life. It’s time you could be spending doing something else — not to mention the health hazards worrying can cause.

“When stress is controlling us, it could be a killer,” said clinical psychologist Dr. Bart Rossi, clinical psychologist.

Rossi said there are very specific ways you can break this cycle of worry.

“What we need to do is to come up with some plan, some strategy — and as I said, changing the expectation level that you have,” Rossi said.

Having a strategy will help you feel more in control, according to Rossi. He also suggests imagining where you’d like to be in six months, in terms of the problem.

“What do I have to do between here and there to make a difference?” he said.

• Talking about your worries and concerns can help ease them;

• Knowing all the facts about something worrisome can help prevent your imagination from running wild;

• Listing your worries on paper can actually help you realize that some of them may never come to fruition.

Another bit of advice: doctors say you should never worry about your past, you can’t change it and worrying about things you have no control over, is a waste of time.


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  1. Another misapplied statistical mumbo jumbo. Wouldn’t it make sense that people worry for a reason, half of the time they worry for their health. Hence, it would only make sense, that people who have a medical condition would live less – worrying is not necessarily a cause but a parallel condition caused by same cause.

  2. Actually, this is about all the time spent on worrying about things completely unrelated to health. The majority of worrying is useless ruminating about the past (which can’t be changed), or the future, which requires problem solving for things that can be changed or acceptance for whatever can’t. And a little bit of faith wouldn’t hurt in any case.