“We suffer more in imagination than in reality.” – Seneca
We can’t control future events that haven’t happened yet. So why do we worry about them?
Worry is based on our self-limiting beliefs that we hold tightly onto. We haven’t experienced the specific event that is in the future but we’ve had countless of “micro-events” in the past that lead us to think either positively or negatively.
If we have a big game to play, rarely do we think we are going to be the hero if we’ve choked in prior games.
If we have a presentation to give, rarely will we see ourselves dazzling the crowd if we generally get nervous in front of a group.
All of these things are deep-rooted in our self-limiting beliefs that we have a hard time getting rid of. The feeling that we will never be good enough. That we will never come through in the clutch. That we are destined for mediocrity.
Despite what you’ve done in the past, it all comes down to preparation with how the future will turn out. Preparing yourself physically, yes, but it’s more of the mental preparation that has a profound effect. Like a muscle in the gym, preparing your mind for these “worry” events takes time and it doesn’t happen overnight.
Here are a few things to consider the next time you lay in bed and are worrying about tomorrow…
First, we must acknowledge that we are too tough on ourselves. We are imperfect beings. Grasp that and we become much more grateful of the good we’ve done versus the bad.
Second, we must accept that we cannot control future events. The future is unwritten yet so we have the ability to make the best of it and shine in the face of any fears we might have.
Third, we must prepare ourselves with the correct stories to alter our thinking. Just like how the type of bedtime story we tell a child can often determine if they have nightmares or not, we need to have an arsenal of stories to pull from when worry starts to creep in.
Do you have those? Have you ever written those down?
Simple questions to pose to yourself like:
- What are the times you succeeded in a tough situation?
- What are the times you were calm and relaxed when you could’ve overreacted?
- When did you feel the most confidence?
- When did you pull off a great accomplishment when your back was against the wall?
Arm yourself with positive stories that can help curb the negative nature of your worry when it creeps into your life. It inevitably will.
Set yourself up for potential future success by the inception that happens in your mind right now. “We become what we think about” is absolutely true and only you can control the thoughts that creep into your head.