Worry can keep you from doing things that are important to you. Have you gotten to the point where you do only what’s required of you, just enough to keep your job and pay your bills? Are you desperate to do the things in life you really want to do, yet you never seem to do them?
I meet so many people who are missing out on what’s possible for their lives. Where does that come from?
A lot of it comes from worry. (And worry is really just fear.)
You worry about people’s opinions. You worry you won’t be good enough. You worry that what you want will take hard work. You worry you won’t have the strength to do it. You worry you will fail.
That was me, too. I worried myself into a corner and didn’t do a fraction of what I could have.
I had so many visions and dreams bouncing through my head in high school. I wanted to join marching band, act on stage in the drama club, and write for the school newspaper. I didn’t do any of that.
In college, I wanted to study history, learn to ski, and play music. I didn’t do any of that.
In my 20s, I wanted to write books, make money, and have great relationships. Yeah, you guessed it. I didn’t do any of that.
I was so locked down in worry that I couldn’t get off my own back to do the things I really wanted to do. I was living Thoreau’s famous quotation: “The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation.”
Maybe you feel that same desperation I did—the sense that your self-worth is tied to your performance, that everyone is judging you all the time, that you will never be good enough in the eyes of others.
As I ventured beyond the tiny comfort zone I had created for myself, I discovered three things:
- I’m more capable than I ever allowed myself to believe.
- Other people really don’t care how my life turns out.
- Most people are afraid and don’t go after their dreams.
I believe you can apply these three things to your life. I’m willing to bet you’re selling yourself short. I think you’re probably worried about what other people are thinking about you. And I bet most of the people you’re worried about aren’t going after the things they want in their lives. They’re just happy to have you to keep them company in their misery, in their desperation.
The fact of the matter is, these people are thinking about you far less than you think they are. Ultimately, you’re worrying for no real reason.
I got tired of worrying so much. I got tired of being tired. I got tired of my desperation.
Am I “perfect” now and free from worry? Not by a long shot. I still have a way to go, a journey that will continue until I breathe my last breath. But I’m better today than I was yesterday, and that’s all I try to worry about these days.
What do you worry about? Is it time to let it go and go after what you really want in life?