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Funny motivational speaker Amy Dee’s blog
My friend Lucy called yesterday, worried. She’s been looking forward to an upcoming trip to meet her first grandchild, but now the concern over the coronavirus has her concerned.
What if she contracts the virus and gives it to her daughter and new grandchild. What if she gets sick and can’t fly home. What if….
And so it goes: the free fall into the worry abyss. If this happens, then next that happens, and so on.
Humans can imagine days, even years into the future and consider the “what might happen”. The problem is: thinking does not make it true.
Worrying is not supportive. We want to believe that worrying helps us solve challenges ahead of time, but does not, because it cannot.
Anticipating every conceivable outcome will not get us any closer to a solution. Worrying never helped solve a problem.
We have no control over the future, so therefore, we cannot choose the best response to an unknown. Lying awake, worrying about a range of potential problems is at best a waste of time and energy and at worst your anxiety may deplete the energy you need to respond properly when the time comes.
Too often, in the middle of the night we start to catastrophize about the worse case scenarios. One potential problem leads us to another potential problem, spins you into dizzying circles instead of leading you to solutions.
A recent study showed how many of our imagined calamities never materialize. The subjects were asked to write down their worries over an extended period of time, and then identify which of the imagined misfortunes didn’t happen. It turns out that 85% of what the subjects worried about never happened, of the 15% that did happen, 79% of subject discovered that they could handle the difficulty better than expected, or the difficulty taught them a lesson worth learning. This means that 97 percent of what you worry over is just your fearful mind punishing you with exaggerations and misperceptions.
In my family, when facing challenges, we say “It isn’t chemo”.
This perceptive means that most challenges do not involve life or death endings. They are just bumps in the road: inconvenient, not fun, but only bumps.
Worrying never (ever) fixed a thing.
So stop focusing on the bumps in the road. Instead, look up and enjoy the ‘present’ of this moment as you journey through life. Don’t let your thoughts get hijacked by worrying.