Don’t worry, Be happy!

       Ask most Americans what their first reaction to “issues” are and the majority will say “worry.” Well, OK, most will say “First I freak out, and then I sit and worry.” I admit, this is NOT due to some decades long, all reaching, academically funded study, no, instead this is an opinion formed by watching countless people, friends, family members even strangers, all get “hit” with some ‘surprise’ that life has developed, and then watching the results. Typically these go through, Shock, Surprise, Denial, freak-outedness, then anger, usually followed or immediately preceding tears of frustration.

       Assuming you can find one of these folks and interrupt their ‘state’ long enough to actually hold a conversation with you, if you ask them why they are reacting the way they are you will typically get one of two reactions. First a look of total disbelief that you would EVER have the gall to ask such a question, followed by more tears as they realize how futile continued existence actually is, and perhaps death by paper cut wouldn’t be THAT bad. If you can get your ‘victim’ for that’s how they truly see themselves “Why oh why has this ever happened to ME – the world HATES me!” Now I doubt that the world actually hates anyone, but keep whining, and you definitely not find yourself on MY Christmas card list. But I digress; let’s go back to our victim.

       You have made yourself out to be a callous fool by actually asking such a question, so you may as well press on, no further harm can be done. So ask again, “Why do you feel this way?” The answer, if they actually think about it, will almost always be something along the lines of, “what are you talking about my world is collapsing around me, how SHOULD I feel?” Well, based on that view point, I guess that you are doing exactly what you can be expected to do, after all if ____ (fill in the blank) truly stands for your world collapsing, from your vantage point, and then maybe you deserve a good cry. But I have 2 questions for you:

1) REALLY? Is that ALL it takes for your world to crumble?

2) For how long? I mean pain is determined in comparison to how long it lasts; at least that’s how we remember it, so how long are you expecting to be like this?

       Now invariably I’m usually pegged as an “insensitive clod” at this point and most folks stop listening, but really, how many times have you solved ANYTHING by worrying about it? Isn’t that really what the crying is all about? Now I get it, if your dad dies, you need a good cry, and it does have positive emotional and physical/biological effects. It lets you vent some of the toxicity that builds up during the “waiting phase.” But whether the waiting has been going on 10 years, or it all happened “so suddenly,” once you have vented that, and your body. Mind is back in balance, what good is all the emotional drama? Unless you LIKE feeling worn out and tired all the time. Maybe red puffy eyes do compliment your new eyeliner, but for the REST of us it’s not really productive past a certain point. That point of course is different for almost all of us.

       Please, don’t take me as cold hearted, I understand that there are legitimate concerns about money and health and financial security (especially today), but how much are you helping yourself or your loved ones, in ANY of these areas, if all you do day and night is focus on the futility of these things and how powerless you feel to do anything about them? I’ll tell you, not a BIT. You are actually making things worse in a manner that you may not have even considered. It is medically proven that excessive stress and worrying takes a TREMENDOUS long term toll on your heart, your nerves and your blood pressure. Anyone who has dealt with “old garden hoses” knows that consistently trying to force large amounts of water at a HIGH pressure through the garden hose will cause rips, tears and eventually a collapse. Imagine that happening somewhere between your heart and you neck?

So if worrying is not a good idea, and whining is NEVER a good idea, than WHAT? – For that check in next time.

Until then, pick an excuse, any excuse…