Writer’s Block….how I hate it! But it’s real and it’s been plaguing me since my last post. When you are retired, live in a small town, and two of your best friends have moved away, it can be difficult to find something to write about. And….this week has been one of those “if it weren’t for bad news, I wouldn’t have had any news at all”! So much sickness among friends & family. BUT!!! I have many things for which to be grateful. Now with that said, let me begin a new post…..
“My name is Cheri and I am a….WORRIER.” (Isn’t that how they begin at AA meetings?) I was raised by a mother who worried A LOT, so I guess she passed the gene on to me. (Wish she had passed on her genes for her beautiful fingernails instead.) My husband says if I don’t have something to worry about, I will find something! And as much a I hate to admit it, he’s exactly right.
Our Sunday School lesson today was on WORRYING and I had high hopes my teacher would give me the antidote to a malady that has plagued me all my life, but sadly that wasn’t the case…even though it was a really good lesson. One thing that was brought out, however, is that WORRY IS NOT A SIN, but an EMOTION. (If it were a sin, I’d be doomed!) Even my pastor’s wife who is in our class admitted that although she doesn’t worry about the future, she worries about things that have happened in the past…why did she do such & such, did I do such & such right, that sort of thing. I don’t worry about the past but I guess I do FRET about certain past things. My problem is WORRYING about “what might happen.” I’m better than I used to be though!
After our lesson I got to reading some online articles about WORRYING & STRESSING and came across one that gave me some food for thought, so I decided to share some of it with you in case you (or someone you care about) is a WORRIER. The article discussed some things you can do to replace your WORRY and it can be found , HERE but this is the long & short of it......
1. Remind yourself: this isn’t happening right now.
Whatever you are worried about either happened in the past or you fear it will happen in the future. You can’t change the past and….what you are afraid of may never come to pass.
advice of Shantideva, an 8th century Buddhist monk: If the problem can be solved why worry? If the problem cannot be solved, worrying will do you no good.
I sure do need to take that advice!
2. Change the channel: in other words, when the worry pops into your head try to divert your thoughts to something else. (note to self…don’t stew in your worry juices!)
3. Use an affirmation: come up with a short positive statement such as “I will not be afraid”, “God and I’ve got this”, “I won’t let this rob me of my joy”, etc. Something you can repeat to yourself when the worrisome thoughts enter your head. (Example: twice I have had to drive alone to St. Simons Island to visit with friends. However, between SSI and me there is this HUMONGOUS & HIGH bridge….which I do NOT like to cross, let alone drive! I have now driven over the bridge a total of 4 times and all the way I have repeated over & over….”I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Bet those people passing me, since I wasn't in any hurry, wondered who in the world I was talking to!)
4. Love yourself, worry and all…not sure I quite get this one but my thought is that if you are a WORRIER you shouldn’t beat yourself up over it. I mean, we all have our flaws😊 Some of us just can’t help that we live & fight with WORRY, but what’s important is that we do our best not to let it consume us.
5. Set aside time to worry…research says there is something to this one. Set aside 20 or so minutes (maybe first thing in the a.m.) and think about what it is that is WORRYING you, think of any possible solutions or something you can do to help the matter, then let it go for the rest of the day. I might try this one….I’ll have my WORRY TIME, followed by my devotional time, and do my best to
The article ended with this statement and I really like it:
Be patient. Some people acquire a stronger tendency to worry in childhood, as a result of experiences as an adult, or due to genetics or a combination of all three. It will take commitment & practice to dispel worry, but you can do this. Celebrate every time you let go of a worry thought and enjoy the sense of relief you feel instead.
Are you a worrier? If not, I’m so happy for you. If you are, how do you deal with it? I’m open to any suggestions!