How can I stop worrying about things that are beyond my control?
This is my favorite fortune cookie prediction ever and I carry it with me always.
You see, I used to be a worrier.
I worried all the time. I worried that something was going to happen to someone I loved, or that something was going to happen to me. I worried that my family was not safe in Mexico City (where I’m from). I worried that I forgot to close the garage door.
Why was it hard for me to even consider letting go of something that could be making me sick?
Because, even though for a long time I couldn’t articulate this, I somehow believed that if I worried about something, I could prevent it. Yup. I believed that most things I worried about wouldn’t happen precisely because I worried about them. I saw my worry as a sort of protective shield, an undetectable force that swirled around the people that I loved and accompanied them wherever they went like an aura/guardian, like a halo on an angel’s head.
I explained this to a friend who looked at me before asking “Nice. How is that working for you?”
I was stumped. I was stunned.
I realized I had inadvertently been practicing being a worrier for years, and that, as such, I could un-learn it. I replaced every worry-thought with another thought. (“All is well”. “Everything is going to be ok.” Or even – “even if that was going to happen my worry is not going to prevent it”.)
I can’t say I don’t worry anymore but I worry a lot less. And when I do, I get to work on letting that crap go.
By asking yourself “WHY”?
You know that they are beyond your control, and despite knowing that, you are still worried? Why? Ask yourself “WHY?”
Once you get the answer of this why, (and the answer will be – because I’m stupid! So I worry about things I can’t control), and after getting this answer, ask yourself another question “What can I change?” The answer will come out to be “Nothing!”. And after asking these two questions, you won’t be worried anymore. So you can move on from the thought and focus on things that matter, things that you can change, things that are in your control, things that are important!