Thursday, October 15, 2009

Don't Worry, Be Happy

Now that Bobby McFerrin song is playing in my mind...and I'll bet yours, too!

Many of us have a lot to worry about these days. Things like supporting our families in this economy while managing to save for the future, how the kids are doing in school and whether to get an H1N1 flu shot. Things like whether family member X will get on your nerves today or you'll get stuck in traffic. And if you'll get everything done on that 'to do' list.

In the face of decreasing home values, fears of more layoffs/not finding another job if you've been laid off (or for the GU, always waiting for that phone to ring and keep ringing so we know our irons in the fire are paying off), health concerns, etc., how do we go about enjoying and making the most of each day? How do we maintain a positive attitude and keep smiling in the face of the disappointments, frustrations and worries large and small that pepper our lives? Just for today, can we reduce the power our concerns can have over us and allow some happiness in?

Approaches for dealing with worry include:

--Be grateful for what you do have. Sometimes when things are looking pretty grim, or when a bunch of things go wrong in a row, it’s hard to remember that there are good or great things to appreciate.
Consider listing things you are grateful for each day and keeping a gratitude journal, as described here . I’ll start: today I’m grateful for supportive and caring friends, that I have a great place to live and for the tasty leftovers in my fridge so I don't have to think about what to have for dinner.
Other takes on the importance of gratitude can be found here and here.

--Believe everything happens for a reason. Sometimes I agree, sometimes I don't. It's hard to accept there's some lesson you're supposed to learn when something doesn't go the way you wanted. Or believe that a disappointment/rejection/failure/mistake can and will lead to something better. Here and here (a for and against debate) is info on this approach.

--Never give up hope. Often easier said than done...

--Let go of things you can’t control and move on. I'm working on this. Info here and here.

Which works best for you?

1 comment:

EilisFlynn said...

Endure. If you can't change it, why worry about it? And if you can change it, why worry about it? (With a tip of the hat to baseball player Mickey Rivers!)