So many of us live with an insidious, low-level sense of fear and foreboding.

I recently found myself reflecting on my fears and how they have shifted and changed over the last few years.

At the start of the pandemic I was terrified by the images of people with temperatures being forcibly removed from their family home. Next came the fear of loved ones getting sick and dying waiting for a hospital bed. After that, the fear was about not having enough work and not being able to pay my mortgage. Next, it was the fear of homeschooling robbing me of my sanity and destroying my relationships with those I love the most. Next is was the fear of my parents getting sick and not being able to get to them. Now, it’s the fear of never being able to look forward to holidays and special events ever again, because it seems I can no longer count on our plans actually coming to fruition.


One of the Thriving Minds tools I teach as a Thrive Global Coach & Facilitator is the technique of Worry Time.

This is how Thrive Global’s Chief Training Officer Joe Hubbard explains it “You can manage this anxiety by scheduling specific times to worry — as opposed to being in a constant state of concern, which takes a heavy toll on your emotional well-being. Intentionally scheduled time dedicated to worrying is known as Worry Time, and science shows it reduces anxiety, stress, and depressive symptoms.”

Because I think best when I am moving my body Worry Time works best for me in the form of a 30 minute “Worry Walk”.

I might spend the first 5 or 10 minutes LETTING BE. Just noticing the fears, worries and emotions that are present for me. I find it helpful to give language to my worries, perhaps saying to myself “I am worried about the way I am speaking to the kids” or “I am worried about the dynamics of this relationship.” I also try to identify and label my emotions “Fear is here”, “Powerlessness is here”, “Anxiety is here”.

From there, I can turn my focus to LETTING GO. Reflecting on the questions: What is no longer serving me? What is in my control? What tiny change can I commit to to gently start to release something that feels heavy or constraining?

And finally I can move onto LETTING IN. Asking: How might I grow my inner/outer resources to better match my current challenges? What is one small thing I can do to move towards nourishment (and away from depletion)?

Do you have a ritual that supports you to open your heart to moments of joy, despite the clouds of worry?


The dark does not destroy the light; it defines it. It’s our fear of the dark that casts our joy into the shadows.

Brene Brown.