October 30      

Today's quotation:

The source of anxiety lies in the future.  If you can keep the future out of mind, you can forget your worries.

Milan Kundera

Today's Meditation:

Right here, right now.  That's where we are, and that's when we're there.  If I'm thinking about tomorrow, there are tons of things that I can think of to worry about.  Tons.  But they truly don't matter, because I know from experience that most of the things that I've ever worried about simply haven't come to pass, so all my worry about them was simply wasted time, time that I could have been happy and carefree, but that I spent worried and stressed instead.  It's been rather silly, to be honest.

I don't fault myself for having done this, as that is-- to a large extent-- how I was raised.  And that tendency was exacerbated by having an alcoholic parent-- every week we would spend worrying about what was going to happen this weekend, because it could get pretty ugly.  But once I was out of that situation, there was no longer any reason to worry, to fill my mind with anxiety.  It was just a habit that I couldn't break for a very long time.

So I want to stay focused on the present, as much to enjoy the present as to avoid thinking about possible negative occurrences in the future.  I want to keep anxiety at bay by not keeping my mind on tomorrow or next week.  So much time lies between now and then that it's virtually impossible to know what's actually going to happen, and I've learned that even if what happens is relatively bad, I can still get through whatever life brings me.  I am a resilient person, and I do have the ability to adapt to new situations and make the most of them rather than letting them get me down.  So if something difficult comes up tomorrow, I can handle it-- I don't need to worry about it now.

I do feel a great deal of sympathy for those who deal with anxiety regularly and who aren't able to deal with it effectively.  I know that their lives must be difficult, and they don't have the tools to deal with it well.  I don't see my own ability to deal with anxiety as an indication that everyone should be able to do so.  But I do know that in my life, anxiety is pretty much a choice, and I prefer to choose to enjoy myself and my life, and I will not stay focused on potential problems of tomorrow when there's so much of the wonderful around me right here and now.

Questions to consider:

Why is it so easy to get our minds focused on what may happen tomorrow rather than what is happening now?

What are some of the negative effects of anxiety on our lives?  How might we deal with them?

What are some ways that you personally can avoid anxiety in your life?

For further thought:

Anxiety is the rust of life, destroying its brightness and weakening its power.  A childlike and abiding trust in Providence is its best preventive and remedy.


more thoughts and ideas on anxiety



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