New to Y2K? What are you worried about? : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

This post is just the latest in my series for the newbies. Feel free to put in your own two cents.

Worry. We all do it. I remember reading somewhere that a large percentage of things we worry about never even happen. We worry sometimes about vague things, and other times about very specific ones. Sometimes this takes the form of a gut feeling that something just isn't right, other times we know that things are not right. Either way we worry. I have actually met people that seem to need to worry, as odd as that may sound. They are natural born "worry-warts". After thinking about this I have sometimes wondered that in the absence of something real to worry about, they would feel compelled to make something up! Anyway, I digress. What I really want to talk about is control, and how it relates to worry.

I think it is important to draw a distinction between what we worry about, in terms of those things we have control over versus those things we do not have any control over. When I look back to when I first became aware of Y2K, and the potential problems associated with it, I was intensely worried - for my family, for my friends, for myself--- This lasted weeks! I have calmed down considerably since then, and recently asked myself what was it that helped me the most to stop worrying.

What I recall now that helped me get over this was remembering the difference between things I had control over and everything else. Once I separated that out I concentrated on those things that I could in some measure control. It worked. For example, I was petrified that there might not be any electricity. I asked myself "is this in my control or not" and for me, since the options were not viable, the answer was "no". As a result I asked "Well, what can I control that would reduce my worry about not having electricity"?

Then I started seeing a ray of hope. I quickly started a list of things that were within my means to do, that would Reduce the impact of this threat to the maximum extent I could. It helped. Big time. Having taken action to mitigate the problems associated with not having electricity, I felt better. I was not in control of the problem. I was in control of my reaction to the problem. This was repeated for each potential Y2K problem area that I was worried about. In each case, I asked the same questions, and took as much control as I could over the situation.

Prioritize and Prepare against whatever you are concerned about. This reduces worry! You may not eliminate your worry, yet you will be reducing it, which is important. So, choose what you worry about very carefully, with thought. Recognize where you do not have any control, and concentrate on taking control where you can - action steps to reduce whatever it is you are worried about. In my case it really helped. Maybe it will help you too.

-- Rob Michaels (, May 04, 1999



I agree with you. I just visited with my next door neighbor, young married mother of 2 little boys and she is very concerned about what may happen. She had been worried but had not taken action, sort of "spinning her wheels". She is now striving to prioritize her preparations: Food, water, shelter/warmth ++. We agreed to work together and both felt greatly relieved. I have almost finished my preps and feel so much more in control than before - not losing sleep any more (over that at least - my 2 yr. old had an earache the other night - oh boy!). Just bought more Benadryl and acetaminophen!

Another thing that helps is that if $$ are really tight there are ways to prep with simple nutritious foods like wheat, corn, rice, beans, sugar, salt, oil, gravy mix, etc. without spending a lot of money. Keep it simple and low tech whenever possible.

Do at least one thing towards preparations each day and don't panic. The key is set your priorities, make a plan and work the plan. Simple, effective preps are still possible - start now.

Nobody knows what will happen for certain. Do what you can, it will be a vast improvement over where you were yesterday.

Good luck!

-- Kristi (securx@Succeed.Net), May 04, 1999.

Rob, Thanks for a much needed pep talk. I've lost many nights of sleep worrying over things that I have no control over. Time and preparation have helped a lot. But it's good to see, in print, a way to deal with worry at a time.

-- (, May 04, 1999.


Good post. Speaking for myself only, I lost a lot of sleep when I first Got It. Six months later, I'm almost over it. Sure, I still worry, but only about the things I might miss and can't replace by myself--televised sports, luxurious vacations to foreign destinations, blah blah blah. I've got a safe and constant water supply, food, and way to be self-sufficient if I have to be.

I don't want to be self-sufficient, but it is comforting to know that I can get by, at least for many months, if nobody helps me.

I think, even in a worst case scenario, that people will band together in a few months. We are a community-driven species.

-- Doug (, May 04, 1999.

Kristi: It's great that you have a neighbor who you can help and work together with. I was glad to see you being up the 'when money is tight' issue and offer some suggestions. Certainly, this is one reason that some folks aren't doing much. As a parent, I also know about those earaches. Medical supplies, and possibly training, are important, especially given the recent reports about the Health Care Industry lagging. Good Luck to you too!

Rcarver: Yeah, I know what you mean about sometimes just needing the reality of print in front of you. Keep at it, as you say, one worry at a time.

Doug: There is a lot I will miss too if it is bad - some friends and family members that are at a considerable distance, for example. I see self-sufficiency a bit differently than you - more as a goal to work towards. Not long ago I had no interest in this, now I do and regardless of what does or doesn't happen I think it is a good thing to do. This in no way means that I have to give many of the things I currently enjoy up, only that I find alternate ways of being able to enjoy these same things. Your last remark about being a community-driven species I found interesting. Let's hope that people make good choices to work together and help each other as a result of some thought and preparation now, instead of just reacting when there is a problem and feeling forced to "do something now" , which may or may not end up being rational.

All: If you are worried now about Y2K, or have been worried about it in the past, try to imagine what it may be like for folks who only begin to understand the potential problems after the word "potential" becomes the word "current". You have a head start. You know at least that there are some troubling possibilities ahead. Use your time wisely. Prepare more and worry less.

-- Rob Michaels (, May 04, 1999.


Even though I tend to be a private person, there is no doubt in my mind that the community-driven tendencies of people will eventually prevail, in even the worst Y2K scenario. To my knowledge, there has never been a country of hermits, even in the worst of times.

And it makes sense. Dividing labor provides efficiencies unimaginable otherwise. A lot of people think they have to do it alone if Y2K goes south.

Well, maybe yes, for a few weeks. The shock of it has to sink in. Some places will never work as a co-op; pick your least favorite inner city. But everywhere else, people will rediscover that peaches grow better on one side of the river and cotton grows better on the other. More than likely, they'll never forget that, just have to do the same things in a more difficult manner.

-- Doug (, May 04, 1999.

Doug: Good point. One thing I read over a year ago that really hit me was the remark "Lone families will not survive". This was on the site. The assumption was that things would get pretty bad, obviously. Anyway, it got me thinking - that we are all in this together - some folks just don't know it yet. People will have to work together.

Well, I just finished my work for the day, after sixteen hours, and it's time to sign off. Looks like more of the same tomorrow. BFN, Rob.

-- Rob Michaels (, May 04, 1999.

every time I go to the grocerie store I buy one y2k item;a box of stick matches(which sell out every week now!)a bag of dried beans,a can of gravy,extra t.p.,tampons building up a little at a time.the impending crises no longer freakes me out,because I prepair,and any items that may dissappear(water filter,camping stuff,guns,etc.)I have now.My angst has transferred to the masses who will not have prepaired through opinion/misinformation/ignorance/arrogance/techno worship

-- zoobie (, May 06, 1999.

Up, Up and away.

-- (, August 11, 1999.

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