Benjamin Franklin once said, "Do not anticipate trouble or worry about what may never happen. Keep in the sunlight." While looking on the bright side is the key, how often do the shadows of worry dim our luminosity?
Worry thrives in darkness and tends to grow exponentially when you're just about to fall asleep. As you're dozing off an idea pops into your head, and the worrisome thoughts start spreading like a virus.
"I'm going to fail at this job."
"I don't have enough money."
"What if I lose my health insurance?"
"I'm going to die alone."
Instead of mentally whirling like a dervish into the wee hours of the morning, the solution may be something you never imagined. Could the worry keeping you awake at night also be the spark that moves you forward? Is worry the catalyst that shifts your energy from doubt and anxiety to calm and harmony?
Here are three ways to make peace with worry, halt the creeping panic and put your sleepless nights behind you.
PERFORM A REALITY CHECK
Worry robs us of our ability to reason and prevents us from thinking clearly in the moment. Take a minute and honestly assess the reality of the situation that's troubling you. You feel a lingering pain in your stomach one evening. You worry it might be cancer. At this moment, take a breath and perform a reality check. Do you really think you have cancer or might it be the burrito you ate for lunch? Calm your mind and think it through. If the pain increases or persists, phone your doctor. Until then, breathe, decompress, and consider how adopting healthier habits could help alleviate stress around your well being.
REALIZE ALL WORRY IS NOT CREATED EQUAL
Not all worries that run through your head are so far-fetched. You may be confronted with some difficult realities. Perhaps you fear you'll be let go from work. You think worrying will get you ahead of the game, eliminate surprise, and start working up a game plan. While worry itself won't give you the answer, the concern about losing your job can be a stepping-stone to helping you find solutions. Take a step back and recognize that you can shift your vibrational energy away from the "what if" fear and toward preparing an actionable strategy. Your mind will ease, leaving you to focus calmly on a solid Plan B and help relieve anxiety around the problem.
TRUST AND LET GO
Worry itself doesn't solve or fix anything. It does prevent you from living with clarity in the present moment. Worry often creates more turmoil and doesn't change what will happen to you tomorrow, next week, next year, or in your old age. There comes a time when you just have to accept the unknown and understand some things are simply out of your control.
Worry is wasted energy -- energy that can be spent productively living our wonderful lives, not spinning our wheels. The future can be frightening at times. However, when we let go and trust in our limitless abundance and divine path, it's much easier to keep in the sunlight.