By Guest Blogger Lorna Harris

My mum doesn’t really worry about anything.

I mean, obviously she is concerned about her family and cares that are we are all happy and safe. Even now we all grown up she likes to hear from us daily, but we all catch up every day in our family, it’s our thing.  But she isn’t a worrier by nature.

She’s chilled and accepting that life happens and sometimes it’s amazing and sometimes things go wrong. Sometimes we can all run into trouble and she is cool with that. She always says there’s no point worrying, when you could spend that time dealing with the issue and finding a solution, and then only IF it happens. She’s like a guru I swear.

My dad on the other hand, an extremely loyal man and talented artist is a real worrier. He panics over things that may happen and can ‘fearcast’ about things that might. Which isn’t a negative thing at all, but the way he (and I at times) both are.

‘Going to Glastonbury Lorna? Oh watch your bag, make sure you don’t walk back to the tent alone, and watch out for terrorists and socialists’

I have inherited a healthy dose of both of their personalities and for that I’m truly grateful, but I would say I’m chilled about the big things.  Recently diagnosed with a long term illness that is incurable, I didn’t panic. Recently faced with a broken lock on my front door? I spiralled into freak out mode.

‘But I have to go to work, what if the chub lock below also breaks? What if the lock needs changing? On and on until I had convinced myself I couldn’t possibly leave the house, despite a secure double lock staring right at me.

Fight or flight is a term often banded about by people who know the brain better than I do. A response to difficult situations which we either stay and fight or run away from. I’ve been known to do both in odd circumstances.  I put this down to being blessed (i always finish what I start and never miss a deadline) and cursed (I lie awake a lot) with an unhealthy leaning towards anxiety.  So much so that my brain and body has been known to mix up responses.  It’s a massive deal breaker for me. When the brain starts reacting in the same way to a slightly overdrawn bank account to a life or death situation one has to ask what an earth is going on in there?

It was this that led me to change my life recently, faced with a difficult career choice and struggling daily with all the changes happening health wise and career wise I handed in my notice to the job I had been at for three years.

I had found myself panicking and dreading it all. For no reason other than the way I was handling balancing my long term pain with trying to be the person I want people to think I am – a sassy PR with a penchant for gin and tonic and not a care in the world, basically taking fake it till you make it a wee bit too far until I knew something had to give.

So I quit my job and fortunately have found a role that is flexible and allows me to work from home more and is on a contract basis at another fabulous organisation. This is stage one of my plan to worry less, solve more. Instead of internalising all the worry, I’ve started to rationalise it with solutions and a back up plan if the things that probably won’t happen do. I have also started to write more, which for me has been the biggest help of all. Seeing it on paper suddenly makes it less daunting.

I’ve started to look at the bigger picture of my life. The horrors of Tunisia playing heavily on my mind, I looked at the twitter feed of a lovely blogger who sadly died in the attack. Her twitter feed full of lovely excitement for her holiday and worries about her love of doughnuts and her increase in not going to the gym. It makes you think doesn’t it?  That all this worry we carry is all about what may never come anyway. That life as we know it can change in a blink of an eye. We really do only have the moment we are currently in.

So yes, this is my plan. Panic less, worry less, and solve more. I may not achieve it all of the time, I mean, anxiety isn’t something you can prepare for in some cases, but trying to keep mindful of the fact that most of the time  things work out alright is something I am really trying to make part of my life.

I think sometimes we have to look at how far we have come and what we have achieved. Give ourselves a pat on the back and take a breath and look around and know that whatever lies ahead we all have inner strength there that we just need to tap in to at the times we need it.

And for the days that doesn’t work for me, I will obviously just call my mum, but I will obviously be prepared for the worst case scenario, as I get that from my dad.

Lorna Harris is a PR and writer from East London.