“Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders, losses, and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson (American Poet)
“My life has been filled with terrible misfortune; most of which never happened.”
Michel de Montaigne (French Philosopher)
“Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow, it only saps today of its joy.”
Leo Buscaglia (American Author)
Worrying is not an action.
Obsessing over something you don’t want to happen is not some kind of moral sacrifice that will prevent bad things from happening either.
Worrying about money, current events, work, death, relationships, other people’s opinions, and politics doesn’t change them and make them better.
Half of these things you can’t control or influence anyway, so worrying is futile.
Worrying about the things in your life that you can actually change doesn’t magically change them.
It might even make you less equipped to take action to make them better.
Change comes from action, not thought.
Worrying, obsessive thoughts, and negativity in general, are all wastes of time.
Beyond that, they use up important resources in your brain and steal your focus while they add to overall stress and anxiety levels, which compromise your brain and your body.
How Worrying Makes You Weak And Kills Your Optimism
Worrying makes you distracted and dulls your sharpness, stressing out your body and shrinking your brain.
It makes everything in your world seem worse than it actually is.
As if the worst thing is actually happening to you… even though it’s not.
From a basic level of functioning, worrying robs from your potential in every way.
The propensity to worry is associated with reduced resilience and ability to compartmentalize in the first place.
Psychological Research published a study that shows that worrying and rumination were associated with reduced cognitive control.
People with higher levels of cognitive control were able to compartmentalize their worry and limit its personal impact, whereas those that had lower levels of cognitive control had higher levels of worry and a reduced ability to differentiate what was personally relevant to them or not.
Furthermore, the more you worry, the worse this lack of control of your thoughts becomes.
Cognition and Emotion reported that worrying reduces working memory capacity by using up resources in the brain.
Anxiety, Stress, & Coping challenged previous research that suggested worry might be useful in problem-solving and found that in fact, it reduces your ability to compartmentalize, have balanced perception, and assess your issues cognitively.
And overall, research out of Cornell University found that 85% of the things that people worry about never actually happen and the 15% of things that actually do happen, people are able to navigate through better than they expected.
So worst case scenario is almost a zero possibility.
And yet, you might be spending a tremendous amount of time worrying about it.
Wasting time, compromising brain health and emotional and physical well-being… for nothing.
Eliminating These Worries Will Instantly Improve Your Life
Outside of worrying about global issues you can’t change and everything pumped out through media on your newsfeed, it’s the issue closer to home that might be occupying valuable brain space in your life.
And this is compromising your ability to reach your goals and be happy.
The truth is, you can regain control of your thoughts.
The reality is, if you ever want to be successful, you must stop worrying so much.
In particular, there are three things you need to stop worrying about now.
1. Fear of missing out.
First, you must stop worrying about missing out on events.
You must work to completely remove your fear of missing out, or FOMO.
Feeling like you are about to miss out on something is painful.
Your mind hates pain.
So terrified of regret that you burn yourself out with obligatory “yeses”.
There’s no filtering or prioritization — there’s no focus at all.
You jump at every offer just in case you might miss out on the big thing.
Whatever that thing is.
So, when someone invites you to a party, or asks you to work late, or tells you about a million dollar idea, your mind will feel the urge to jump at this “opportunity” in order to avoid the pain of missing out.
It’s a burn-out recipe in action but it’s an endless fury of useless, wasted energy in thought too.
You must ignore this urge to worry about missing out on something.
Build up a resistance against it by practicing saying “no” to everything first.
Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that you have only one chance to say “yes” to things.
In most cases, you can say “no” to an opportunity at first and say “yes” later.
Practicing this will give you time to evaluate what you actually want to do and what will actually move you closer to your goals.
You’ll instantly feel more in control and relaxed by only engaging in activities that are aligned with your goals.
2. Your reputation.
Second, you must stop worrying about being seen as unaccountable or irresponsible.
Yes, it’s important to be accountable to your commitments.
But not all commitments must last forever.
You’re allowed to change your mind.
You should change your mind if something isn’t right for you — at any time, without guilt.
If you change your mind or grow out of a commitment, don’t be afraid to talk about it openly and find a better way forward.
Your life needs to come first.
Which doesn’t mean you have to act like a jerk or not be a person of your word, but it does mean that sometimes you have to back out of things.
Some “yeses” turn out to be bad decisions.
When this happens, take responsibility for your failure, learn from it, and move on.
Worrying about your reputation and other people’s opinions of you makes you weak.
It makes you a doormat for everyone else’s agenda while you’re being held hostage by their changing opinion of you.
It’s insidious servitude for praise.
The best way to avoid making bad commitments is to stop being afraid of letting other people down.
People will get over it.
If someone wants you to commit to something but it doesn’t feel right in your gut, say “no.”
Don’t ever say yes out of guilt, pity, or charity.
Only say yes when you really want to say yes.
3. Everything that could wrong.
Third, quit worrying about “what could go wrong.”
Like politics, environmental disasters such as earthquakes and asteroids, and death.
Or envisioning worst case scenarios for money and relationships.
Thinking about the worst will not give you the best.
If you really want to be prepared, think in terms of solutions.
Think in terms of action.
Fill in missing resources where you can, and assume and ruminate on you being totally equipped to handle every area of your life.
Stay focused on your priorities and protect your time and energy from outside influences.
Restrict time with negative people who are worry mongers.
Surround yourself with positive thinkers and doers and become more like them.
The next time you find yourself asking, “What if everything goes wrong?” or “What if my worst case scenario happens?”, simply reverse the question and instead ask, “What if everything goes right?” “What if my best case scenario happens?”
Then lean into it by saying, “Everything will go right because of XYZ.”
Then execute on XYZ until you get what you want.
By doing this, you’ll start to live with expectancy instead of living in fear.
By practicing this regularly, your brain will start getting used to expecting the best outcome, and priming you for your best response.
From this place, you’ll be able to maximize your brainpower for creative problem-solving and the best overall response.
You won’t be crippled by the fear of “what if” as your brain rides its negative bias.
Living with expectancy means knowing that you can create your own future, and that you can get anything you want in life if you apply yourself correctly.
Don’t live in La La Land where you ignore that bad things can happen. Be aware and prepared, but don’t let worry paralyze you from taking action. Worrying about what other people think, what you’re missing out on, or all the things that “might” happen robs your focus and keeps you from reaching your goals. Instead, direct your focus to your best performance and response to achieve best outcomes. Get out of your thoughts and move into action that will move you forward with optimistic expectation so your fear doesn’t control you.
To learn more about the three sure ways to stay worried and kill your optimism, and to get instant access to exclusive training videos, case studies, insider documents, and my private online network, get on the Escape Plan wait list.