Superstition & Anxiety, Is There A Link?

My Thoughts On Superstition & Anxiety



Don't walk under ladders, breaking a mirror is seven years bad luck, step on a crack and break your mother's back. We've all heard superstitious phrases like these before. These are all part of a wide spread idea that is seemingly harmless similar to a fairly tale. These ideas are usually passed down from generation to generation and are more of a social idea rather than individual.


Is this totally true though? I admit I'm a highly superstitious person at heart even though I try to not let it show. Just this morning, minutes after waking up, I had a slight panic inside thinking about it being the start of the month and I hadn't said "white rabbits". Strange I know, but this is a phrase I practically grew up with. The idea being that on the first day of the month if you say the phrase "white rabbits" before midday you'll have good luck throughout the month.

Logically it doesn't make any sense, just like a lot of superstitions, but it's something that is so ingrained in my personality that I have to do it. If I noticed after midday that I haven't said it I'll be filled with anxiety and dread, worrying if I messed up my chances of a nice  month.

This led me to question if my superstitious thoughts could be connected to my anxiety in some ways.  My superstition had become a, sort of, blanket for me. It was helping to reduce my anxiety and giving me this idea that I had control of some aspects of my life when I didn't.

We all hate uncertainty and I'm sure that's something to do with where our superstitions come from. Who wouldn't pass up the opportunity to make their day better, or heighten their chances of winning a game, or avoiding some terrible unforeseen accident? So if course we are going to come up with ideas, as a society, that makes us feel like we have just a little more control over these things.

Superstition and anxiety seem to share a love hate relationship in my mind. My anxiety can be calmed down with superstition, but my superstition can cause me to feel quiet anxious in some situations. No matter how logical I try to make these situations in my head, my little superstitions are firmly implanted there. So for better or worse, they'll stay being a part of my life. Hopefully now though, I'll try more to focus on the positive aspects rather than negative ones.

Knock on wood.

6 comments

  1. What an interesting perspective! Anxiety and superstition does go hand-in-hand. We do each of them to avoid the outcome of the other. This definitely gives me something to think about. Thanks for the sharing!

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    1. Thanks for reading my post :) I'm glad I could give you something to think about!

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  2. I could see how it could cause anxiety in some. I'm somewhat superstitious but not to the point where it causes anxiety. I've never heard of the "white rabbit" saying either!

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    1. Maybe it's a local thing? I heard it as a child so who knows where it came from :)
      Thanks for reading my post!

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  3. This is a really interesting perspective - even though I've always found the origin and history of most superstitions fascinating I've never really believed any of them. So I've never really been terribly anxious about walking under ladders and stepping over my black cat, haha!

    But it makes sense that the two could be tied together.

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    1. I think it's less to do with it being actual "bad luck" and more that it can make people worried that bad things will happen because of an unrelated incident. Thanks for reading my post!

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