This book addresses worry which has been a common problem for decades among everyone. It offers step-by-step practical and actionable tips to eliminating worry. After reading the classic “How to Win Friends and Influence People,” I knew I had to give this book a read!
1. Keep busy. Don’t let yourself be upset by small things.
If we keep busy by having many activities, we won’t even have time to worry. It is impossible for a human to think of more than one thing at a time. The problem is that we still worry when it comes to the time of enjoyment and relaxing. So if you are worried, then use the medicine of work.
A lot of our conflicts also come from trivialities. Our life is too short to be brooding over unimportant things. So we need to shift our focus to pleasurable things.
2. Examine the facts.
Instead of continuously worrying about a problem, we need to start thinking more intelligently and logically upon approaching it. We need to ask ourselves: what are the chances that this event will happen?
- Rule 1: Get the facts. Confusion is the chief cause of worry. Concentrate on getting the facts to eliminate worry.
- Rule 2: Analyze the facts.
- Rule 3: Act of the facts.
- 1) What is the problem?
- 2) What is the cause of the problem?
- 3) What are all the possible solutions to the problem?
- 4) What is the best solution?
As a college student, I constantly struggle with finances so here’s an example of how I brainstormed ways to start saving.
- 1) What is the problem? Saving money.
- 2) What is the cause of the problem? I’m overspending because I’m shopping for items I don’t need. I also have large expenses.
- 3) What are all the possible solutions to the problem? Start saving 10% of income every month and slowly increase. Get a job that pays more. Wait 24-48 hours before buying something to see if I really need it. Block the shopping sites on my laptop. Take out my credit card information on Amazon. Let my mom do the grocery shopping.
- 4) What is the best solution? All of these solutions work and can be implemented together.
3. Cooperate with the inevitable.
Circumstances alone do not make us happy or unhappy. It is the way we react to circumstances that determines our feelings. So accept the things that cannot be changed. With acceptance, the worry will disappear.
4. Put a “Stop-Loss” on your worries.
Know when there is a limit to the amount of worry you should have. Sense when to say stop and enough. Decide just how much anxiety a thing may be worth and refuse to give it any more. Develop your own private goal standards.
- 1) How much does thing I’m worrying about really matter to me?
- 2) At what point should I put a “stop-loss” to this worry and forget it?
- 3) How much should I pay for this whistle? Have I already paid more than its worth?
5. Let the past bury its dead. Control your thoughts.
We can’t change the past. There’s that saying: don’t cry over spilled milk. That milk is gone. All you can do is write it off, forget it and go onto the next thing. Don’t hold onto the past. Instead, learn from your mistakes and move on. Concentrate on plans for the future.
Our life is what our thoughts make it. We need to choose our own thoughts. So assume a positive attitude. Note the difference between concern versus worry. Concern is approaching a problem calmly. Worrying means going around in circles madly. No one can make you at peace except for yourself. Action follows feeling. Not the other way around. So you can control your actions in order to control your feelings.
Follow the “Just For Today” program:
“Just for today, I will…”
- 1) I will be happy. Happiness is from within, not from externals.
- 2) I will try to adjust for what is. Not adjust to my own desires. I will take my family, my business, and my luck as they come and fit myself to them.
- 3) I will take care of my body. Exercise, care for it and nourish it. I will not abuse and neglect it.
- 4) I will try to strengthen my mind. Learn something useful. I will read something that requires effort, thought and concentration.
- 5) I will exercise my soul. I will do somebody a good turn and not get found out. I will do at least two things I don’t want to do
- 6) I will be agreeable. I will look as well as I can, dress as becomingly as possible, talk low, act courteously, be liberal with praise, criticize not at all, nor find fault with anything and not try to regulate nor improve anyone.
- 7) I will try to love through this day only, not to tackle my whole life problem at once.
- 8) I will have a program. I will write down what I expect to do every hour.
- 9) I will have a quiet half hour just for myself. Sometimes think of God.
- 10) I will be unafraid. I will not be afraid to be happy, to enjoy what is beautiful, to love, and to believe that those I love, love me.
6. Never try to get even with your enemies.
Hatred makes us exhausted, gives us heart trouble and ruins our looks. Let’s love our enemies and forgive them. Every night, think of how to forgive everything and everyone.
I remember in school there was that one classmate who took pleasure in insulting me and putting me down. At that time, I was filled with a lot of resentment towards her so I thought of as many scenarios as I could to get back at her and hurt her. But now that I reflect back to that experience, I’ve come to realize there was no point in prolonging my anger and resentment. It was only harming myself. So if I were to go back in time, I would’ve just tried to just forgive and ignore her instead of holding onto that anger. The feelings of hatred would be for her to hold, not for me.
7. Count your blessings. Not your troubles. Don’t worry about ingratitude.
We often think about what we lack instead of what we have. We should make the habit of counting our blessings.
If we want to find happiness, let’s also not worry about ingratitude from others and just give for the inner joy of giving.
- A. Instead of worrying about ingratitude, let’s expect it.
- B. Let’s remember that the only way to find happiness is not to expect gratitude, but to give for the joy of giving.
- C. Let’s remember that gratitude is a “cultivated” trait. If we want our children to be grateful, we must train them to be grateful.
8. Let’s not imitate others. Lets be ourselves.
One of the biggest mistakes is to pretend to be someone else. This is a common problem seen among Hollywood actors and people faking their personality during job interviews. There is no one else like you. So don’t be someone else.
For the longest time, I disliked my personality. I disliked that I was terribly shy and quiet. So I tried to follow the advice, “fake it till you make it” by pretending that I was an extrovert who enjoyed going to social events, partying, and drinking. But it was practically torturous for me to live a life in pretense and doing activities that I hated everyday. I’ve learned that if you continue to desire to be someone other than yourself, it will undoubtedly cost you your happiness.
9. When fate hands us a lemon, let’s try to make lemonade.
The most important thing in life is not to capitalize on your gains. The really important thing is to profit from your losses. Let’s try to turn a minus to a plus.
10. Forget about yourself so you can stay interested in others.
Try to think everyday of how you can help someone. Do a good deed everyday that can bring a smile or joy to someone. Show genuine interest in all the people you encounter. This is especially true in the workplace. People want to be seen as human, not just a part of an organization. It is when you start to shift your focus on other people, you will stop focusing so much on yourself and your worries.
11. When you receive criticism, do the best you can. Let’s criticize ourselves.
People get satisfaction from bringing down someone higher than them. Criticism from others means you’re making progress towards something. There’s that saying: no one ever kicks a dead dog. Most of the time, people don’t really care about you since they’re only thinking about themselves. So just do what you feel is right and ignore all the criticism.
Let’s also continue to ask for unbiased constructive and helpful criticism. Let’s do a self reflection of ourselves everyday.
Most of our fatigue comes from our psychological attitude. Our muscles get tense when we’re working. But work tension and relaxation are habits. So we need to learn relax while doing work. We can start by relaxing the eyes. Close your eyes and say to yourself, “Let go, let go…”
- Relax in odd moments. Keep a sock in front of you to remind yourself to relax similar to that.
- Work as much as possible in a comfortable position.
- Check in with yourself 4-5 times a day.
- Test yourself: Just how tired am I?
- 1. Keep busy. Don’t let yourself be upset by small things. Start getting busy in order to stop worry. Don’t brood over small things.
- 2. Examine the facts. Get the facts, analyze the facts, and act on the facts. Ask: 1) What is the problem? 2) What is the cause of the problem? 3) What are all the possible solutions to the problem? 4) What solution do you suggest? 5) What is the best solution?
- 3. Cooperate with the inevitable. How we view and react to the circumstance matters.
- 4. Put a “Stop-Loss” on your worries. Set a limit to your worries.
- 5. Let the past bury its dead. Control your thoughts. Don’t hold onto the past. Learn from mistakes and focus on plans for future. Assume a positive attitude and take action towards promoting those feelings. Follow the “Just For Today” program.
- 6. Never try to get even with your enemies. Hatred makes us tired and worried. Forgive and love our enemies.
- 7. Count your blessings. Not your troubles. Don’t worry about ingratitude. Focus on what you have. Don’t expect gratitude from others. It does not come natural to most people.
- 8. Let’s not imitate others. Lets be ourselves. Don’t make the mistake of pretending to be someone else.
- 9. When fate hands us a lemon, let’s try to make lemonade. Capitalize on your losses, not gains.
- 10. Forget about yourself so you can stay interested in others. Think of how you can help someone everyday. You worry less when you focus on others instead of yourself.
- 11. When you received criticism, do the best you can. Let’s criticize ourselves. People get satisfaction in bringing someone down higher than them. Ignore the critics and keep doing what you feel is right. Ask for constructive criticism and do self reflection.
- 12. Rest. Relax in odd moments. Work as much as possible in a comfortable position. Check in with yourself 4-5 times a day. Test yourself: Just how tired am I?
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