Worrying is the act of “living” in tomorrow with our thoughts steeped in the future.
This is different than thinking about tomorrow or your future in a constructive way as in planning and setting goals. It’s also different than dreaming about your future and allowing yourself to visualize achieving or having something you desire. This is healthy. In fact, I encourage both dreaming and visualizing your self already attaining your desires as well as setting goals and putting plans in motion pertaining to your future! These are MUSTS in my book!
“Living” in tomorrow is more about feeling the need to respond, react or engage with things that haven’t happened yet. Your mind is “living out” scenarios that haven’t happened and most likely never will! It sounds ridiculous when you hear it written out this way doesn’t it? But the struggle is real and difficult for many of us to stay free from this type of thinking.
Before you start feeling bad about yourself or pulling out your personal flogger, I want you to realize you have probably not been set up for success in this area. External influences have a significant effect on your behavior. For instance, if you grew up in a home where the adults in your life spent much of their time “living in tomorrow”, you are repeating what was modeled for you. That is not an excuse, it is just a fact and once you know better, you are able to do better.
Consider the world we live in and the fact that we are bombarded daily with consistent pleas for us to pay attention to not only what IS wrong among us, but also constant forecasting and supposing what MAY go wrong. We are actually being trained DAILY in how to worry and encouraged to become chronic worriers!
What do you do with all of this?! It may feel overwhelming, but the solution is actually simple. I didn’t say easy. I said simple. The best way to combat these external influences is to LIMIT THEM! Limit time spent with those people and things that perpetuate or escalate or encourage your time spent in worry. Limit your time watching the news and news programs. Limit your time on social media.
The remedy to worry is living in today with your thoughts RESTING in the present. Respond, react and engage your thoughts only in today and today’s events. The present is the ONLY thing that is real. It is the ONLY place you are alive. The past is gone – you are no longer able to respond, react or engage with anything from the past. It is over. The future has not happened which means you are not able to respond, react or engage with it yet. The energy you are expending trying to do that is wasted and not available now for today’s events. Not only are you wasting energy, but because we are not built to handle tomorrow’s events on top of today’s your body reacts with dis-ease which can have serious implications.
Your thoughts can find REST when you are mindfully in the present.
Please tune in to my podcast episode “The Remedy to Worry” where not only will I teach you the five steps to alleviate worry, I will also identify four common coping techniques we use that aren’t helping at all.
I believe when you implement my five-step approach, you will create space in your life for more calm, ease and joy!