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Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Day 15: thought for the day

 

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Hi, my name is Leslie and I’m a worrier.

I’m announcing it here

like I would if I were in a big circle of chairs filled with people who begin each meeting by announcing their personal struggle to the world.

I’m not embarrassed to admit it, this is what I struggle with, I worry.

And my journey is about learning to let go, to live in the moment and to have faith, this is what I’m always working on.

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Although most of the time I’m like that kid in the Bruce Willis movie who says, “I see dead people” except my line is, “I see all the bad things that just might happen”—especially when it comes to my kids. Late at night. When they’re not answering their damn text messages.

note to myself:

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So the other day when I stumbled on this short article entitled,

“How to be happier in just one minute,”

it made my little old heart sing. Seriously I really loved it. No, it contains nothing new and earth shattering but I hope you read it. Because if there’s one thing I’ve learned about life, it’s that timing is everything.

And today this one simple question is working for me.

It seems to have the power to instantly jolt me out of my negative mind-set-- which is what worrying is-- for just a hair breath of a second.  Which turns out, is enough time for me to catch myself and allow the door to gratitude to crack open a bit. 

In case you don’t have time to read the article here’s the question to ask yourself when  your mind’s whizzing out of control and you’re feeling stressed out, worried or down.

Ok. Are you ready?

Ask yourself this:

Am I focusing on what is going right or what is going wrong right now?

And the key—for me—are those two last words.

Right now. Right this second.

Because that’s all any of us have, right?  This one. Precious. Moment.

And I sure don’t want to waste it worrying.

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If you read the article let me know what you think.

I always love to hear from you.

By the way, I’ve figured out that the worst thing about blogging every day in October is that I’m having a terrible time responding to my comments. Believe me, I treasure each one and I’m trying to respond..it just might take a while.

Happy 15th of October!

xoxo

Leslie

 

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16 comments:

Simply LKJ said...

Great article. A friend in my Bible study group recently shared something that a friend of hers does in her home, and I loved the idea and thought I would share it with you. She purchased some decorative stones at the craft store, and a decorative bowl to put them in. When she starts to "go there" she thinks of something that she is grateful for, writes in on a stone and places it in the bowl. She encourages her family members to participate as well.. And, as more and more stones are written on, the less worry, discontent you see, rather you see all you have to be thankful and grateful for.

Susan said...

Great article, and a wonderful reminder to all of us. I,too, am a born worrier. Thankfully, I am married to someone who is not. Most of the time, we balance each other out :)

Karen said...

Leslie,
That article is a keeper, I've emailed the link to myself so that I can return to it when I forget. I am a very positive person, but worry is easy to creep in sometimes. I remember working with a woman from North Carolina who used this saying whenever I'd stress about something, (in a thick southern drawl)"Darlin', don't borrow trouble". I have reminded myself of that tons of times throughout the years.
And yes, all that wisdom used to fly out the window when a son wasn't home by curfew or wasn't answering his phone!
xo,
Karen

Calypso In The Country said...

The article and your blog are the perfect things for me to read. I am a major worrier. Major. The thought of anything ever happening to my kids is the scariest thing I could ever imagine. Your thought for the day is a great reminder and something I have to remember to tell myself over and over again...Thanks Leslie.
Shelley

Joanne Nauta-Koot said...

So identify. Am also a "what if happens" person. For every what if , I already begin to formulate plan a,b,c, b with variables 1,2,3. Enormous waste of energy and time.
While reading the article a writer came to mind that also had a very practical way of re focusing our worries and stresses, to stay in the day;in the moment. Sarah Ban Breathnach who wrote simple simplicites, and encouraged us to write a daily gratitude journal. 5 things each day to be grateful for, that have blessed you. Easy when life is good and no bumps in your life's road. A huge challenge when it goes pear shaped. I think it will be added to tomorrow's journal to add more consciousness to my blessings each day. Thank you Leslie for sharing. As you self posted....just breathe....breathing right with you.

Gypsy Heart said...

Leslie, I would never have considered you a worrier. My mother was a Master of Worry! I used to be when I was younger but now, not so much. There is nothing you can do to control or change others...I know you know that! :) It's true that we only have this moment that we're in so try not to ruin it by the worrying.

Have you ever read "Simple Abundance" by Sarah ban Breathnach? It came out in the 90's and she was on Oprah often. Her theory of staying in gratitude is wonderful! Make a list of at least 5 things each night that you're grateful for. Your list will grow longer and your life will change!

I used to have a problem with praying and asking for solutions...but I didn't just leave it with God. I had the tendency to keep taking it back. I created a God Box and it is a visual reminder for me to "let go and let God". I place requests on pieces of paper...date them and always write Thank you! on them. Place them in the box and let go. I go through the box maybe 3-4 x a year and see that "X" was handled much better than I ever dreamed, "Y" wasn't so important and "Z" was still being worked on. I'd put the current date on Z and back in the box it would go.

I also feel that what we think about, we bring about. That really gets me to turn things around if I stray down the worry path.

You are brilliant, my friend, and I feel like a dunce sharing this. I do think that sometimes a suggestion can ring true with us and we consider trying it. I hope you accept these thoughts as just suggestions. :)

xo
Pat

karen@somewhatquirky said...

I'm not a worrier. Yes I am bragging. hah! What I know about bad things happening - what we worry about never happens and what happens is sometimes worse than we could ever imagine. Because I don't usually worry, times when I do make me a little panicked. I kind of freak out.

Lou said...

Hi there fellow worrier! Yes I am one too and no matter how many books I read on the topic, I do always revert to form. It's such a shame; I am married to someone who never worries and his life is so...free...by comparison! I read the article and yes it spoke to me too. It is about mental agility and being to change the mindset swiftly. I find I can spiral into worrying so it's just a case of changing the direction. Going to try it today :-) L x

Catherine Robinson said...

Oh, me too, Leslie...and I admit to it too...yoga has definitely helped me to keep it under control, but it's often there, bubbling away.
Love your quotes...and as my husband often says to me...'worrying will never change the outcome'...wise words, eh?
Great post, as always xx

Vannessa@Luxuria said...

Oh I SO hear you Leslie. But I have learnt (slowly) about how changing your thoughts really can change ones life. I write in a gratitude journal every night to make sure the last thing in my brain before going to sleep is all the good things. Learning to meditate has also helped me to learn how to switch off that internal chatter. I also don't watch/listen to the news (despite my Dad and Husband being news addicts). I've been on a "news diet" for about 8 years and I certainly never have the news playing in the background whilst I go about my daily activities (it's the worst thing if you are a worrier ;-)
Lovely post as always Leslie xx

Marilyn said...

A very timely post for those of us in Dallas! I've always tried to adhere to the thought that worrying uses up valuable mental energy and creates additional stress. I really try to stay focused on the positive things in life. (Of course, easier said than done!)

As always, I loved your post and the attached article!

Marilyn (in Dallas)

Carla from The River said...

Great article, thank you for sharing. I also like what Simply LKJ shared as well.
Thank you!!
Carla

Jeanne Henriques said...

Read it...and I am grateful... for you Leslie. For sharing posts like this..and I hope with that you were able to take another deep breath when you read this. I know I did. But...let me say, you are remarkable, to write a post each day in October?? Off the stress chart for me..I love your honesty. Keeping it real...always refreshing. Best wishes Leslie for a lovely weekend! xx

Catherine Robinson said...

Ha Ha...for you and me both, lovely Leslie ;)
Happy Weekend xx

Donna Sinclair said...

I really see gratitude and worry as totally different states of mind. I am not a huge worrier although I was in my younger days. That state of worry seemed to be connected to a lack of confidence or acceptance in how things might turn out. Often as a result of worrying I learned that some things were meant to be and that my worrying did little if anything to change a situation. It simply caused me to be thrown in to a state of discomfort until I could sort of where "things" ended up.

Gratitude on the other hand is something that I think I learned once I had children. I remember preparing a speech for a secondary school graduating class and I decided to focus on "choice". I don't believe those students benefited from that speech as much as I did. Writing, thinking, writing pushed me into a state of reflection on the choices I had made in my own life and how grateful I felt for all that I had and all that I could be if I chose to do so.
Anyway, some comments here mention writing things down and I relate to that very well. I think there is something about doing so that turns that simple jotting down of thoughts and ideas into a metacognitive strategy for getting us to take on those ideas as part of who we are.
Oh boy, hope that is not sounding too convoluted. Sorry if it is....oh no, perhaps I am still a worrier. :)

Sharon @ Elizabeth & Co. said...

Even though my logical mind tells me that worry is pretty pointless, it's really hard to stop. My number one worry by far is about the safety and wellness of my kids. And I don't think that will ever go away, no matter how old they get!

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