Author’s Note: This post on determining whether or not you’re a worrier is brought to you by previous versions of my own internal monologue, and I’m here to tell you: It gets better. Like most things, however, the first step to handling anxiety is admitting you have a problem. For those of you who already know you’re a worrier and, perhaps, an anxious person, you might be interested in my post on The Difference Between Fear and Anxiety and Stress (and what I do when Anxiety Shows Up).
For those of you who don’t know if you’re worriers, read on.
Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? – Matthew 6:27
Anxiety is the pits. It can ruin a beautiful day, make you hide in bed, make you drive your friends and family away. It warps your perspective on your life and makes you fear the world around you… and it does it all from inside the house (of your brain).
Of course, identifying when you’re being an anxious person takes a certain amount of self-awareness. It takes the ability to separate yourself from the world around you and identify when your own responses are coming from a place of uncertainty and worry. It requires the ability to put aside your unhealthy methods of self-comfort and instead ask yourself what the problem really is. For example:
- Is the problem that all of your coworkers secretly hate you and find you completely insufferable, or is the problem that you think all of our coworkers secretly hate you and find you completely insufferable, which is causing you to be anxious and unhappy?
- Is the problem that your life is spinning out of control, or is your problem that you think you have to control everything in order for it to be okay, which is an impossible goal?
- Is the unknown future a dark, scary place, or is it a place of infinite possibility?
It’s all about your mindset, baby. And if your mindset is one of a worrier, you’re not alone. Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States, affecting almost one in five adults. If your mindset is one of a worrier, you’re also more likely to be depressed: half of those diagnosed with depression are also diagnosed with an anxiety disorder. (Check out the Anxiety and Depression Associated of America site here for more “fun” facts.)
But again, before you can do anything about this, you need to figure out how much of a worrier you actually are.
The Penn State Worry Questionnaire
The Penn State Worry Questionnaire was developed in 1990 by Meyer, Miller, Metzger, and Borkovec to serve as a tool to measure self-reporting of worrying. You will be asked to rate yourself on a scale of 1 (“not at all typical of me”) to 5 (“very typical of me”) for 16 questions.
There are no right or wrong answers. Do not spend too long on any one question.
This quiz is not intended to be a diagnostic tool, and you should talk to a mental health professional if you are worried about your results.
Answer the questions below, then click Submit.