Day 394: Fear of losing track of things

In past posts, I have written about many types of fear (or dread or whatever you want to call it), including:

  1. Fear of loss.
  2. Fear of losing things.
  3. Friggin’ fear of practically everything else1 you might think of.

Today I would like to write about …

… fear of losing track of things.

Losing track of things seems to be a recurrent theme of mine (see here, here, and here for possible proof about that).  And, as usual, when I write about fear, I assume that I am not alone (although your details, in this area, may vary).

Among things I have recently feared losing track of:

  • The right word to use, when expressing myself.
  • The exact right number, as I’m needing to enter credit card numbers, patient numbers, numerical dates, account numbers, and a kashmillion 1other non-intuitive codes2, while performing computer-based transactions, before TIME RUNS OUT!!

(pant, pant, pant)

Okay, I caught my breath.  Where was I?

Oh, yes.  That list of things I have recently feared losing track of:

  • The cable for my camera, which I plan to use in Panama (when I’m away, in less than two weeks)
  • The actual dates for my trip (although I think I may have memorized those at this point).
  • The right way to do bullet points for this list (don’t even try to visualize how bullets have been flying everywhere, here, in the construction of this post because … it’s been a disaster).

Well!  The last word — of that last bullet point of that last list — leads me to this cognitive distortion. 3

Catastrophizing. 
This is a particularly extreme and painful form of fortune telling, where we project a situation into a disaster or the worst-case scenario. You might think catastrophizing helps you prepare and protect yourself, but it usually causes needless anxiety and worry.

Hmmmm.  You know what?  When I went to retrieve that cognitive distortion from my other blog here  — called Ann’s Helpful Hints (re: Letting go of Judgment)  — I realized that there’s something else I’ve lost track of.

How to edit my posts on that second blog of mine.

Yes, dear readers, I was thinking I would like to add something new, to this list of antidotes for unhelpful thoughts.  I wanted to add a new antidote, but because I haven’t edited the two posts at that second blog since I created it (almost a year ago) …. I don’t remember how. And How to Edit those particular posts …. is not immediately obvious to me. And I can’t consider trying to figure that out, right now, because I have to finish this post and get to work, before …. TIME RUNS OUT!!

(pant, pant, pant)

Sorry. Where was I?

Oh,yes. I was thinking of adding a new antidote to my list, for the first time since March.  What is that new antidote?  Something like this:

Talking to yourself.  If you are stuck in an old, unhelpful way of thinking, especially one that involves a “critical voice,” try challenging that old voice by speaking in a new, kinder way to yourself. Watch the language that you use, and speak to yourself as you would to somebody you might be naturally kinder to — a friend, a stranger, somebody that evokes empathy and sympathy in you.

I have found that antidote — of talking to myself — can be a really effective way to learn (and unlearn) things.  As a matter of fact, here are some times when I’ve been talking to myself, lately:

  • When I’m afraid (especially of doing something that’s new or that feels new, because I haven’t done it in a while).
  • Other times when I’m judging my abilities.
  • When I have to enter incredibly long patient IDs, when I’m at my work computer, about fifty friggin’ times a day.

Okay!  It’s time for me to start wrapping up this post, people.

What feels left unwritten, at this point?

My mother sometimes said to me, “Ann, I think you might lose track of your head, if it wasn’t attached.” Therefore, as a supporting image for this post, I COULD show you a picture of my head.

However, I can’t do that right now. If you’ve lost track of that of why that is, you’ll just have to see footnote #4, below, for the answer.

Instead, here’s a photo I snapped a few minutes ago:

Image

Why THAT photo? (I imagine you saying to yourself, right now.) Well, it represents several other things I tend to lose track of:

  1. Food, once I put it in the refrigerator.
  2. Eating healthier.
  3. A Zen, mindful, balanced, centered, or what-ever-you want-to-call that helpful frame of mind.
  4. My own personal power (that is, awareness of those things I can control).

Okay!  Time for me to take some personal power and end this post.

Thanks to Earthbound Farm Organics (for the Zen and the Power), people everywhere who lose track of things, and to you — of course! — for reading today.


  1.  It’s possible that this is an exaggeration.

  2. Other non-intuitive codes include any collection of alpha-numberic characters that don’t resemble the language I learned growing up. Email addresses, anybody? Not to mention the numbers and symbols I need to use, every time, to insert these friggin’ footnotes.

  3. It’s not the last entry on this list of unhelpful and automatic thoughts (also called cognitive distortions in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy), but I think you’ll be able to find it, soon enough.

  4. I’m not showing a photo of my head, because — at this point in my blogging path, I am not showing photos of my face. I suppose i could show a photo of the back of my head, but, I washed my hair before I went to sleep, so my hair’s a mess. Don’t even try to imagine it … it’s a disaster.  Plus, I’ve got to end this post, soon, and get to work.  Did you lose track of that, too? (Don’t worry, you’re probably not alone.)

Categories: inspiration, personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , | 14 Comments

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14 thoughts on “Day 394: Fear of losing track of things

  1. lol seems like time to get an organizer ;) I often find myself thinking the same as you. By the way, sorry about the early like before reading and commenting. Dang wordpress lol!

    Yep your head’s still attached to your shoulders! no worries there :P

  2. Thank you, Ann. I would love to chat with you on how to get all the nice neat (here) links and the nice neat post links as you know how to do. I haven’t figured that out yet.

    Anyways back to this post. Beautiful. I have a POST going on just today about fear, imagine that. Here YOU are writing about fear, and I have a Food 4 Thought going on. Hmmm…….

    When I am afraid of something, I start talking out loud to myself (and yep, I’ve done it around people and then I realize I best hush up) saying things like, “Amy, you CAN do this!” , “Amy, piece of cake. This is going to be FUN!” And of course what I wrote on my blog today about fear.

    Hope you have a glorious day and keep track of all those numbers. Just how did we become such slaves to numbers of all things? And passwords come to think of it? Grrrrrrr……..

    • Thanks for this great comment, Amy.

      Your question about how to do links: At the top of the page, when you are creating or editing a post, there is a little icon that shows a chain link and then, to the right of it, another icon showing the link “exploding” (at least that’s how I look at it). If you want to link something, select the word(s) in your post you want to link, and then the chain icon should be available to press. When you press that icon, a window will come up, and then you can insert the address for the link.

      Does that make sense? I used to be a technical writer, but I’m definitely out of practice.

      I’m glad to hear that talking to yourself helps you — that’s a great skill to have and practice. I also appreciate the “Grrrrrr.” Thanks for your kind wishes; I hope you have a glorious day, too.

      • Thank you so much, Ann. Now I will practice. I think I know what you mean. We’ll see. I am saving this info you gave me so I can refer to it. (((HUGS)))Amy

  3. I’ve had days, months, weeks like that, and worked very hard to get around it, because that is an awful way to live life! It takes so much energy to stress and worry over so many things at once! I just don’t have enough energy to devote to Catastrophizing anymore – I have many more things to focus my energy on! Great post!

  4. I catastrophize constantly, but chalk it up under “hope for the best, prepare for the worst”.

    I was going to say something else, but I lost track of what it is.
    (And never let it be said I shun the low hanging joke fruit!) ;)

  5. I think you have discovered a common phrase from the parents of our generation, Ann. ‘You’d lose your head if it wasn’t attached to your shoulders’ was the version in my house. I always thought I could smart-aleck that it actually was attached to my neck, but I didn’t think it would go over big in those situations.

    Now I, too, temporarily lose touch with things that should be right there in the old noggin’, on top of the shoulders and the neck.

    Numbers. Yeesh. Passwords. Accounts. I know that I knew it!

    And strict online procedures, like you say, can send me scrambling for my notes.

    I’ve added two blogs for other sites to my writing responsibilities, and both have different blog-posting procedures.

    I will get the passwords and order-of-clicks down. I vow. Will I remember that mission tomorrow …

    • Thank you, Mark, for reminding me that we’re all doing the best we can. ” Yeesh” is right. I think I would have been confused by that whole head/shoulders thing, too, so good for you for coming up with a great line (even if you didn’t use it).

  6. I think many are living in the age of catastrophizing. Its actually cool term with chaotic consequences :-)

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