Fact: 99% of our worry never amounts to anything more than worry.
Worry is the cause of an earth-moving amount of unnecessary stress and emotional torment. Worry can become habitual, leading to a life plagued by anxiety about what might happen if X, Y and Z…
So Why Do We Worry So Much?
Well, perhaps because there was a time when a worry did come true, when the worst did happen. It only takes for one event to prove our worry a worthy endeavour for us to worry even more. That one event manifests itself in our sub-conscious, emerging to the front of the mind each time we mull over what we believe to be a risky, dangerous or potentially heart-breaking situation.
Perhaps a guy did cheat on you once.
Perhaps your work wasn’t as superb as it usually is, that one time.
Perhaps a friend did once have an accident after you warned her something bad could happen.
Perhaps your son did get sick after not wearing his coat that time.
But then consider all the other times you’ve feared the worst and nothing materialised except the norm or another outcome that didn’t make any real change to the status quo. Consider the times things have turned out pretty well, the times that things have turned out favourably and life has been pretty good.
If you’re reading this and thinking that life has never been very kind, that things seem to always favour the dark side for you, consider for a moment that perhaps your worry is perpetuating a cycle of negativity. The world is a mirror of energy; if you keep thinking the worst then negativity will gravitate towards you.
The majority of serial worriers live until a ripe old age and then wonder what all the worry was for.
The Mindfulness Approach to Worry
Don’t get me wrong; a certain level of worry is part and parcel of life. A little bit of worry before a big life event is natural, and can be a positive factor in getting the adrenaline pumping we require to feel alive and kicking. It’s also entirely natural to have some worry (though not obsessively) about getting sick, injuring ourselves and having adequate food and shelter. This is all part of our self-preservation wiring
But excessive worrying will never lift you out of a danger zone, it will never improve a situation, help you see clearer or aid you in devising a strategy for prosperity.
If you are an excessive worrier, try this mindfulness approach next time your nerves and anxiety get the better of you. Simply recite the following affirmations:
- No one ever worried their way to prosperity, in any aspect of life. No amount of worrying will make my situation better.
- This worry is preventing me seeing clearly and taking positive, appropriate action.
- Worry will only lead me to make irrational decisions based on thoughts of things that haven’t yet happened and probably never will.
- My worry is infectious. It makes others worry too, causing unnecessary tension and stress.
- Worrying like this is unnecessary and will affect my health and happiness.
It’s easy to worry, and sometimes impossible to avoid, but for the most part, unnecessary worry can be tempered by simply affirming the above and presenting a logical argument to your state of mind.