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Welcome to The Worry Bar


I'm doing an online Zoom MBSR (mindfulness-based stress reduction) class from gilda's club. Last week the class was about accepting thoughts vrs have an aversion to thoughts. That resonated with me and now I have a coping mechanism that is taking shape and seems to be reducing my scanxiety and FOR (fear of recurrence)

When I have a worry, I imagine that I am the proprietor of "The Worry Bar" and welcome the thought and invite it to take a seat. I tell it, you can stay here as long as you want, but I get to choose your drink. Scanxiety is at the end of the bar today drinking raspberry lime kombucha. I know this may sound silly, but I'm finding it kinda works. I def. have less anxiety than unusual about how I need to call and schedule a routine follow-up scan on Thursday. Entering The Worry Bar as I type that is "Afraid to look forward to my anniversary on 4/2 because then maybe something bad will happen when I get the scan" She is super annoying so even though she wanted iced coffee she's getting a chamomile tea because she needs to chill out.

Sharing in case this sort of mental game helps anyone else :-)


  • annabelle2
    annabelle2 Member Posts: 27
    edited March 2021

    I like this! I'm going to try to come up with something similar (and just contacted Gilda's Club to see if I can get some help after struggling alone for 3 years). Thank you for sharing this Smile

  • mountainmia
    mountainmia Member Posts: 857
    edited March 2021

    I took MBSR through my hospital in 2014, prior to cancer diagnosis. I had in particular a relationship issue that had triggered severe anxiety and depression. Even though I was through the worst of it, I still had clean-up work to do.

    I created a room similar to yours, for that person and a handful of other "troublesome people" in my life. They especially would visit me as I tried to go to sleep, keeping me awake or giving me a poor night's sleep.

    I made my troublesome people stay on the screened deck. Some parts of the year that's a pretty delightful place, but it would be pretty uncomfortable to sit out there overnight. There is only a door into the house, none out to the yard. There's no bathroom available. I would tell them, I can't keep you from showing up, but you have to stay on the screened deck. I'm not going to entertain you. I'm not serving you a drink. You can't come in for the bathroom. Once they were there, not inside with me, I would go to sleep and sleep peacefully. It honestly still amazes me how well it worked, and after a while, they quit showing up so much.

    I haven't used this method much to deal with health anxiety, but if I practiced it, I'm sure I could make it work.

    Thanks for bringing it up. I hope others get some benefit from it, too.

  • 2019whatayear
    2019whatayear Member Posts: 468
    edited March 2021

    Yes def. take advantage of Gilda's Club they have many virtual programs right now!

    Mountain Mia. I love this. No bathroom breaks for the troublesome :-)

  • moderators
    moderators Posts: 8,091
    edited March 2021

    2019whatayear -- this is great! Thank you for sharing! We're sure this conversation will be helpful for many managing the worry and stress that comes with a diagnosis. We hope this thread stays flowing and others offer suggestions or experiences they've found helpful!

    For additional information, some links from the main

    We look forward to seeing how this thread evolves!

    --The Mods