That is what the song says to us - but HOW?
I expect you are saying, 'I'd love to stop, but I can't!'
So here are two things to assist you: one is an amazingly encouraging piece of news AND the other a fool proof way to stop your worrying - want to know more?
Part One - Don't Worry!!!
First the amazing news comes from a study which says the average person spends 110 minutes a day worrying about work, money, relationships and appearance! OUCH!!!
That might not seem too bad until you work out the sum of how much time that is for your 'average' lifetime - a whopping great FIVE years!
Would you like to use those 5 years more enjoyably?
Some of you may really enjoy worrying and if that is the case and it is a conscious choice to continue, off you go! But if you would like to stop - please read on.
First, let us clarify that we do not mean considering your options and doing some risk control thinking when you have a problem. We mean the chicken circle thinking, where you go round and round with the same scare mongering thoughts. This usually means that you also put yourself in an increasingly negative emotional state, which makes the chicken circle thinking usually begins a downward spiral. Then your thinking and mood go from bad to awful.
So what to do about it?
1. First, become consciously aware that you are worrying. Make a little movement, such as tapping your wrist to really bring it to your awareness.
2. Next note the topic you are worrying about on a piece of paper or your phone, so you are sure to remember what it was. However, right now, is NOT the time to worry about it, so get on with something else!
3. If a bit later you find yourself starting to worry about the same thing again, then put a mark by the topic to show it is the second / third / forth etc. time. And get on with something else!!
4. If you find that you are starting to worry about a new topic, then note that on your paper as well and note any repeats of that. And get on with something else…
5. And you will ‘get on with something else’ because you have a special treat in store for later that day. Schedule into your diary a 30 minute very important appointment.
That is your 30 minute ‘ worry time’. Just for you and just for all those topics you noted during the day – ahhhhh – uninterrupted worry time (you will have noted, I am sure that you are actually missing 50 minutes of worry time from the fragmented, hodgepodge previous activity).
6. Take your piece of paper out and look at the topics you have written down. You may wish to prioritise them and divide your 30 minutes up accordingly.
7. Set your timer and pick your first topic and start to seriously worry. Remember no solutions, no options, NO plans, NO positive forward thinking. JUST useless chicken circle thinking! I expect you will find it IMPOSSIBLE for your allotted 30 minutes!
8. Repeat this process for as long as it takes you to realise that worry is a waste of your precious life. Any time you slip back, just repeat again. Even if you stay with the 30 minutes you are still adding nearly 2 ½ years of good quality, positive days to your life – not bad!
And not a diet or exercise in sight!!!
Here are a few good quotes I found about worry:
From George F. Burns – “When I look back on all these worries, I remember the story of the old man who said on his deathbed that he had had a lot of trouble in his life, most of which had never happened.”
Be Ye Happy? - Eight Steps to Happiness
Part 2 – Be Happy!
The last blog was ' Don't worry, be happy!' and we dealt with how to stop worrying if that was a problem for you or someone for whom you care. However that does not deal with building your happiness- so here are 8 Mind Chi steps to happiness.
Before I start, I wonder if you are you resistant to the idea of building your happiness? Some people say if they don't expect to be happy they can't be disappointed. This is a shame as even if things do not work out as you expect, you have filled all the preparatory time with a negative attitude which is not so good for you either mentally or physically. So far better for your own wellbeing to be very occasionally let down or disappointed than to waste lots of potentially happy moments. So it is worth giving it a ‘go’!
You might want to create your 'happiness line' - this will show the full range of your happiness scale. How would you arrange these happy emotions from just happy to ecstatically joyful? Where are you right now? Where would you like to be? What is stopping you? Because we can often think of many negative emotions, but happy ones are not so easy, here are several for your consideration: Mind Chi Positive Emotional Chart
Why not give happiness a trial? Here are your 8 Mind Chi steps:
1. Energy boosters - can you think of someone who makes you smile as soon as you think of them? Cultivate a few people who you can phone or meet for a coffee who immediately boost your energy and increase your happiness quotient.
2. 99% bad - being realistic, how bad actually is it all? It must be less than 100% or you would be dead! So even if it is 99% bad, there is still 1% of good - the perfect cup of tea, the fact you are alive to see another day... so step into the 1% and start to push to make the 1% move to 2 or 4 or 8%!
3. Donkey story - there is a story about research conducted with two boys. One was placed in a room full of toys and the other was placed in a room full of manure and they were left alone for the day. When the researchers returned, they first went to the boy with all the toys and as they neared his door they heard him crying, when they asked him why he replied that the toys were broken and he was bored. As they neared the boy with the manure they expected it to be even worse, but at the door they heard whistling and singing and scraping sounds, intrigued they opened the door to see him busily digging away. 'What are you doing?' they asked - 'With all this manure' the boy replied, 'There must be a donkey close by, and I want to find him!' The moral of this story is that life may give you a big pile of manure at times, so dig for the donkey, there always is one if you look well.
4. On / off - either / or switch - can't be both - one of the many incredible things about your brain is that it cannot do two opposing emotions at the same time! So you must choose between happy and sad/ angry/ frustrated. It is YOUR conscious choice, not anyone else's!
5. Always someone worse off - some people find it easier to think of others who are worse off than they are. There is no difficulty in finding stories on TV or the paper of others’ suffering. Take a few minutes to think how much worse it could be.
6. Music - do you have some pieces of music that can change your mood as soon as the first few bars are played? Have several of those pieces available so you can access them with ease. If you play an instrument that too can be a very quick way to mood adjust.
7. Repay unkindness with a kindness - if someone has been rude or unkind to you - breathe deeply and choose to do something nice or kind to either them or another person. Maybe even do it anonymously. It is quite incredible how taking the high ground (rather than dropping to their level) makes you feel so much happier.
8. Exercise - dancing – energetic cleaning, moving your body can get rid of any anger or frustration and move you into a happier place. As can gardening, cooking or any hobby - what do you love to do? What can you lose yourself in, such as woodwork, sewing or painting? All these just transport you to another place and suddenly you find you are happy again.
OK, just one more!
9. Your Mind Chi Basic 8 step routine – this simple, yet very effective daily routine provides you with a very practical way to increase your happiness quotient. Steps 1 & 2 put your body and brain back under your control; steps 3 & 4 allow you to have closure on the past 24 hours – taking any lessons from the negative and acknowledging the successes; steps 5 & 6 making sure your BEAT (Body, Emotions, Actions & Thoughts) are as you want them in the now and finally steps 7 & 8 plan your future 24 hours and provide a moment of gratitude – perfect for happiness boosting.
Don't Worry, Be Happy!!!
The Holistic Life Coach
Holistic & Natural Solutions for Health and Wellbeing