“Never let the future disturb you. You will meet it, if you have to, with the same weapons of reason which today arm you against the present.”
― Marcus Aurelius, Meditations
Worry is thinking about future things that could go wrong in our lives.
I am guilty---I catch myself all the time worrying about things I have no control over, and more importantly, things that probably will never happen.
Why is this? What is it in our psyche that causes us to needlessly worry about family, work, friends, finances, health, events or other circumstances in our lives?
As best as I can ascertain, people that worry do so because they have a mindset that on occasion focuses on the negative...they focus on the things they don't want to happen versus focusing on the things they do want to happen.
By extension -- do those negative thoughts encourage those very things we worry about to actually manifest and happen in our lives?
Worry versus Concern
I want to make one quick distinction...is what you are thinking about a worry or a concern? They are two very different things...concern is the more logical of the two...it is first and foremost a thought not an emotion, and requires real knowledge of a situation, an understanding there may be a problem, and a analytical process to back it up. Concern is followed by action or a thought-out solution to the issue.....worrying on the other hand is an emotion and has none of those elements.
Concerns are a natural part of our lives, and are valid and beneficial ...Worry is abstract and baseless and is invalid and harmful to us and those around us.
See the difference? read on.....
“Whatever is going to happen will happen, whether we worry or not.”
― Ana Monnar
Effects of Over-Worrying
Much like other emotions like fear, over-worrying can damage us both mentally and physically and is a big culprit in reducing our quality of life, optimism and happiness.
According to WebMD, worry affects sleep habits, can cause eating disorders, contributes to anxiety, stress and panic attacks and contributes to bad health habits such as overeating, smoking and the use of drugs and alcohol as external solutions to try to deal with the emotion.
Worrying can also have a huge effect on relationships, self confidence and job performance.
How to change your mindset to eliminate worry
Live in the present and if you are thinking beyond today, apply logic to your thought process, set goals and have a well-designed plan for your future.
Deal with issues or problems as they surface, with action or effort, not worry or inaction.
If you catch yourself worrying mindlessly about future events, stop yourself by thinking or doing something in the present.
Ignore or discount the trivial things that do not matter to you or your life.
Write down those things that worry you, and objectively think them through, one by one. By doing so, you disable the control those things have over you.