Worry Doesn't Work

Worry Doesn't Work

Why not live a worry free life?
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In theology today, my professor began class with a question:

"If you went into high school knowing you would get into the college of your choice, what, if anything, would you have done differently?"

This question, and my response to it, has been on my mind since because I know exactly what I would have changed: I would have put less pressure on myself, not always gone the extra mile. Bigger than that, I would not have been anxious and stressed all the time about attaining a perfection that I set out for myself.

Recently, I have felt the urge to live a "worry free life," and I think, if high school had had this caveat of me getting to go to college wherever I wanted, this is the kind of life I would have lived.

Still, this reflection isn't meant to be one that dwells on what was, but meant to inspire a new way of thinking for the present and future, this idea of a worry-free life.

What does it mean to be worry-free?

I think not worrying is often so hard because it assumes a certain trust in the unknown. Often times, we may feel this need to worry, compelled to do so because "stress is good." Before tests, I've become anxious when I'm NOT feeling anxious about it, thinking that my confidence in the material must be some sign that everything will go terribly wrong. But where is the logic in that?

A lack of worrying assumes a trust in the unknown because when we make the conscious choice to stay calm and collected in troubling situations, we are surrendering ourselves to the course of life.

When we choose not to worry, we simultaneously allow whatever will be, to be.

I use the word choice here intentionally because not worrying is a choice we make for ourselves. Our lives are in our hands: we can choose to not trust ourselves, not trust God or whomever, nor let life take its course, and be anxious about the outcomes of situations, or we can choose to surrender ourselves, by trusting that we are doing the very best we can, and let whatever will happen, happen. Not worrying is a letting go of that need for perfection.

Surrendering and trusting do not mean that if we want something, we shouldn't take action to get it, just that the backdrop of anxiousness and stress about the outcome disappears.

I have a book by Max Lucado called Live Loved: Experiencing God's Presence in Everyday Life. In this daily devotional, there is a section called "Worry Doesn't Work." In it, Lucado reminds us how:

Fret won't fill a bird's belly with food or a flower's petal with color... you can dedicate a decade of anxious thoughts to the brevity of life and not extend it by one minute."

"Worry accomplishes nothing."

Think about it: Does worry bring anything to your life? Does it add joy and insight, love or learning? For me, I'd say the answer to all of these is no.

This does not mean that we should not be ignorant about the world's issues and problems surrounding us, but that with a worry free mindset, we will be able to approach them with greater insight.

Since coming to college, I've found myself doing less work, and spending more time with the people around me. Of course, I still worry about things. However, now more than ever, I want this to shift. Worry simply has no purpose in my life.

Life is infinitely important and full of meaning, yet at the same time, the little things aren't meant to be taken so seriously.

So, the next time you find yourself anxious or stressed, worried about that test, that relationship, that job you applied for, take a step back and ask yourself: Is this mentality serving me? Just that act of recognition may be enough to shift your mindset into one that is full of less worry and more trust and faith.

Let's all strive to live our lives worry free,

Sam

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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11 Things 20-Year-Olds Who Look 12 Are Tired Of Hearing

No, I don't need a kids' menu, thank you very much.
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I used to just laugh it off when someone thought I was 12 years old back when I was in high school, but now that I am three years deep into college getting ready to graduate, I don’t laugh anymore. If you are in the same situation as me looking like a child trying to get into a bar/club and the bouncer is questioning if your ID is fake, please read on — you may relate very much. Here are 11 things 20+ year-olds who look 12 are tired of hearing:


1. I didn’t know they let 12-year-olds work here.

Nope. They don’t.

2. What school do you go to?

Me: Florida State.

Person: University?!

3. *Tries to get a sample at Target* Is your parent nearby?

Let me FaceTime my mom really quick and ask her permission for this protein bar sample.

SEE ALSO: 11 Things 20-Year-Olds Who Look 12 Are Tired Of Saying

4. *Server at a restaurant* Here you go, sweetie. What can I get you, darling? Hi, honey, how are you?

You are no more than three years older than me, there is no need for "sweetie."

5. It’s your birthday? Happy Birthday! How old now, fourteen/fifteen?

6. You look so much older when you wear makeup.

Is that supposed to be a compliment?

7. Wow, you're how old? You look like you are twelve.

Have you seen a twelve-year-old lately?

8. You probably just look young because you're short.


9. *Tries to flirt with a guy* You're a little too young for me I think.

I'm your age. Maybe even older.


10. Are you old enough to see this movie? Can I see your ID please?

11. You're going to be so thankful when you are in your 50's.

So I've been told. Hopefully, it's worth it.

Cover Image Credit: YouTube

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5 Tips For Handling A Quarter Life Crisis

Don't know what to do with your life, me either

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I thought I had my entire life figured out; career, graduate school, moving. All of it. But maybe I was wrong. I have already been accepted to graduate school, have my internship/capstone figured out but then I was given an opportunity of a lifetime to do a different internship that made me question if my plan was the right plan for me. It was terrifying, stressful and difficult to figure out what to do because it affects the rest of my life. But there are some tips you can do to keep your cool.

1.    PLAN PLAN PLAN

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Write that shit down. Take a piece of paper and plan out where each path could take you and the steps you need to take to get to each goal on the path. Seeing it all on paper will slow you down and help determine if what you're thinking is even an option.

2.    Talk to people

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Talk it out, talk to your friends, your family, your advisor. Talk to anyone you can about your plan. You will hear other people's opinions and thoughts. They may have thought of a factor that you didn't. It will help you better understand your thoughts when you explain your tornado brain to someone else.

 3.    Be Open

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This was REALLY hard for me. I talked to probably five different people about the change in life choices and heard both positive and negative thoughts. It is important to be open and listen to the negative idea even if it seems like you're being attacked. It will make you think, are you really prepared for 4-8 more years of school (or whatever else it may be).

 4.    Breathe and Stress Relieve 

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YES, this is 100% one of the biggest most stressful decision you have to make but it is also incredibly important that you are patient, and calm throughout the entire process. It is easier said than done, trust me but take five steps back, seven deep breaths and 20 minutes to relieve the built-up stress. Go to the gym, listen to music, paint, do whatever is going to put a smile on your face and calm you. Then come back to the problem with a clear head to think and process all the options.

5.    Don’t be afraid

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It is literally terrifying when you feel lost, and unsure of what to do with your life. Especially if your family is super strict and you want to keep everyone happy. But REMEMBER it is YOUR life. YOUR future. You have to worry about what is the best option for you and what will make you happy in the long run. Even if it is harder and going to take longer. Be concerned about YOURSELF and not what anyone else thinks of you.

Quarter life crises are totally normal and not fun. Don't feel like you're alone or a failure for being unsure. It is good to explore all your options and be the happiest you can be. If that takes a little freak out and some stress so is it. Just use these steps to make the best of it.

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