Don't Worry If You're a Worrier
lthough worrying does not feel good， it may have surprising benefits， when done in just the right amount， two psychology researchers argue in a new editorial.
For example， worrying may motivate people to engage in behaviors that are potentially beneficial to their health， the researchers said. People who are worried may slather on sunscreen to help prevent skin cancer， and women may get regular mammograms to screen for breast cancer， the researchers said.
“Despite its negative reputation， not all worry is destructive or even futile，” lead author Kate Sweeny， a psychology professor at the University of California， Riverside， said in a statement.
However， the relationship between worry and behaviors that are potentially beneficial to people's health is complex and seems to depend on how much a person worries， the authors noted.
Previous research has shown that “women who reported moderate amounts of worry， compared to women reporting relatively low or high levels of worry， are more likely to get screened for cancer，” Sweeny said. “It seems that both too much and too little worry can interfere with motivation， but the right amount of worry can motivate without paralyzing.”