Overcoming worries and stress

What will happen if I tell my boss that mistake I made? Will he fire me?
The girl I like smiled at someone else. She probably loves him, and hates me.
This assignment I’m working on is due tomorrow and all I have is one sentence. I’m going to fail, it’s useless to try.

Sometimes you drown in the voices.

Sometimes you can’t help but be overcome. Life has so many questions, and even more answers. The problem is, most of the possible answers our imaginations create are doomsday predictions. We naturally focus on the negative; blame it on evolution. We need to focus on the negative because it’s better for survival.
It isn’t very good for your mental health though.

“Worry is the interest you pay on a debt you may not owe.”
-Keith Caserta

Over and over, we see our doomsday predictions crumble in the face of reality.

So why is it that we can never stop them in the first place? Each time a new problem arises, we stress, we build it up.
This time it WILL be the end of me.

A long time ago, I got fed up with this cycle. So I came up with a method of shrinking the problem down to it’s actual size.

On your death bed, will this problem matter to you?

With your very last breath, will you say “that assignment was the defining moment of my life. If only I did better, my life would have been amazing.”
I’m going to go out on a limb and say no.

Well, you aren’t on your death bed. Right now you are in your actual bed, crying because that girl smiled at someone. Crying because she definitely hates you.
So, step two!

Imagine yourself ten years from now, will it matter then?

I’m still out here on this limb, and I’m guessing the answer is still a resounding no. I want you to continue imagining yourself at different intervals until you get to your current age. How long was it before you decided “I’ll still care at that point.”

Was is it a year after the event? Six months? Three months? Great. Now you have a timeline for how long you are going to care about this problem.
But if you already know that eventually it won’t matter to you, then why let it matter to you now?

We build up our problems into giant monsters.

Once we start to shrink them down, we can defend ourselves from them. We can start to take chunks out of them and soften their grip on us.

You can never get rid of these thoughts, at least I can’t. But we can see them for what they really are…

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