There are two days you should never worry about.
“Don’t worry about the world coming to an end today. It’s already tomorrow in Australia.” (Charles Schultz)
Most people worry at some time or other, would you agree? It could be about something that has already happened or maybe about something they think may happen.
Worry may be “natural” and understandable but is it really helpful?
The unknown author of this short poem doesn’t seem to think so.
There are two days in every week about which we should not worry;
two days which should be kept free from fear and apprehension.
One of these days is Yesterday with all its mistakes and cares,
its faults and blunders, its aches and pains.
But yesterday has passed forever beyond our control.
All the money in the world cannot bring back Yesterday.
We cannot undo a single act we performed;
we cannot erase a single word we said.
Yesterday is gone forever.
The other day we should not worry about is Tomorrow
with all its possible adversities, its burdens,
its large promise and its poor performance;
Tomorrow is also beyond our immediate control.
Tomorrow the sun will rise, either in splendor or behind a mask of clouds, but it will rise.
And until it does, we have no stake in Tomorrow, for it is yet to be born.
This leaves only one day: Today.
Any person can fight the battle of just one day.
It is when you and I add the burdens of those two awful eternities, Yesterday and Tomorrow, that we break down.
It is not the experience of Today that drives a person mad,
It is the remorse or dread or bitterness of something which happened Yesterday and the dread of what Tomorrow may bring.
Let us, therefore, Live but one day at a time.
It may be difficult to do what the poem suggests all the time, but it is a possibility and well worth aiming for. After all, worrying can cause all manner of emotional, mental and physical harm.
Here are 3 simple tips you can try:
- Acknowledge your worries without judgement or beating yourself up. Write them down; even the simple act of getting them out of your head and onto paper can lessen their impact. Then ask yourself what if anything you can do about each of worries. If there is something you can do, make a plan and make a start. If there isn’t anything, ask yourself how worrying can help you feel better…..and bit by bit, as you realise that it won’t, let them go.
- Use a commanding internal voice to say with authority “Stop!” Then breathe slowly and deeply for 30 seconds or so. This can literally give you a breathing space begin addressing your concerns. If it helps, ask yourself questions to start challenging the basis of your worries and start bringing them down to size and into some form of perspective. Questions like: “What’s the worst that can happen?”. “In the scheme of things, how much does this matter?” etc.
- Review the things that you’ve worried about in the past. (You probably can’t remember most of them.) Learn from what you did or didn’t do. Ask yourself did worrying make any difference then. If it didn’t, why worry now?
And even if you don’t succeed 100% of the time, with practice you’ll get better at it.
And that could literally add years to your life!