All Stressed Up and No Place to Blow
By Steve Goodier
All stressed up and no place to blow. Does that sometimes sound like
It is rarely the big crises of life that cause us destructive worry.
Rather, those persistent small concerns do the most long-term damage
to our spirits, minds and bodies.
According to Bernard Asbell and Karen Wynn in the book WHAT THEY KNOW
ABOUT YOU (Random House, 1991) here are the top ten reasons
middle-aged people worry:
1. Concern about weight
2. Health of a family member
3. Rising prices
4. House maintenance
5. Too much to do
6. Misplacing or losing things
7. Outside or yard maintenance
8. Property, investments, and taxes
10. Physical appearance
How many times do you find yourself on this list? Yet, none of these
is a huge problem. It's true. you don't get ulcers from what you eat --
you get them from what's eating you!
I asked a woman who was facing some truly large problems, "Can you
just get through today?" I felt there was no other course of action
for her than to concentrate on managing only the concerns of the
present. Anything more seemed overwhelming.
She said, "I always take just one day at a time. And sometimes I take
one hour at a time. And sometimes it's one minute!"
If worry and anxiety are getting the best of you, first take steps to
manage the problem, fix the problem or get rid of the problem. Then,
you need only look ahead to the end of the day. Can you get through
this day? This hour? If so, that may be enough.
It was the Buddha who said, "The secret of health for both mind and
body is not to mourn for the past, not to worry about the future, or
not to anticipate troubles, but to live the present moment wisely and
earnestly." And Jesus said, "Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow
will worry about itself."
It's about learning to live one day at a time. And it's great
advice... particularly when you are all stressed up and no place to
Steve Goodier's books & newsletter: