A few days ago, I found myself thinking about the younger me. The younger me whose cares were few and her bouts of troubles were many.
Driving 70 miles per hour around the curves of my southern hometown while fidgeting with the radio, applying my makeup, and picking the worst guys are examples of my random teenage behavior. Yet, I survived each circumstance with my sanity, and I am able to speak about it.
Thank goodness that I am past the woes of my younger self.
Have you ever wondered how your younger self survived? She most likely survived because you worried less and lived more. Could you do that now?
Many women would respond with examples of why worry is necessary:
“I have children, and I must prepare [code word for worry] for the future.”
“I have a goal I want to reach in my career, and I have to accept the stress [the other code word for worry] that comes with the accomplishments.”
Well, guess what?
Those sweet children and those ambitious goals need you…and when worry takes control, you cannot accomplish what you set out to do. It’s hard to imagine that worry could put us all in a place that we aren’t looking to go anytime soon. A place of dysfunction, irritability, and many times physical illness.
Yes, worry will make you sick.
In my own experience, figuring out how to worry less and live more is equivalent to describing the lunch date of a unicorn and a leprechaun. It’s simply hard to determine how to put worrying less and living more into action.
There are a myriad of options for finding the courage to jump in the car with life and leave worry waiting for a taxi. Here are a few strategies to help us all put down worry and pick up living.
Six Ways to Worry Less and Live More
#1. Focus on the Important Stuff
Write down three tasks you need to complete each day and erase the small tasks on the to-do-list. Choose to focus on the most important tasks for each day, and complete them with vigor.
#2. No More Repeats
Let go of the hurtful, trauma-filled experiences of your past. Choose to move on from harboring the fear that you might repeat past mistakes in your present life.
When we fear that experiences may happen again, we carry around worry like a newborn wrapped in one of those cute mommy slings. The only difference: babies grow up and we don’t have to carry them anymore, but worry never grows up, it only grows heavier.
#3. Gracefully Say No
Learn to politely and firmly say “NO” to petty situations that may add stress to your life. “No” is one of the best ways to relieve the horrors of worry. When we say yes to everyone and everything, we add their worries on to our backs.
#4. Hone your Circle
Do your friends drain you or fill you? Living more includes choosing to spend your time with people that who help you smile more.
Freedom and joy should be the feeling we have when we are spending time with those we elect to be in our circle.
#5. Pay Yourself to Worry Less
This week or month, however your money comes, drop a few dollars that you normally would spend on irrelevant items in a special jar labeled “WORRY NOT”.
Choose a set amount that will work for you. Each time you add money to the container, remind yourself to worry less. After two or three weeks of collecting your coins, buy yourself a nice gift or pay off a small debt.
Finances are often the culprit of much worry. Lessen financial worry by saving more.
#6. Do What You Love
Do what you love three times a week or more. If you love to draw or color, do that. If you feel your happiest when you’re dancing, go dance and dance like there is no tomorrow.
Now, if the activity you love is illegal, please find an option that won’t have your family and friends worried for you. Nevertheless, do what you love and do it often.
Whatever you choose to do to lessen your load and kick worry to the curb, we should make a bold decision to do it as soon as we can.
The worry that consumes us only makes the greatness we carry more difficult to share with others.
And, when our purpose in life is to share our greatness with the world, we have no room to house worry.
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