Dealing with Anxiety

Don’t overthink it.

Lots of remedies are out there – maybe too many – some of which promote more anxious thinking.

Focus on one thought.

99% of what we fear will never happen.

And that 1% will very likely not be as we feared or imagined.

That means we are worrying about things that can never hurt us.

Our thoughts about fear are hurting us more.

We can talk ourselves into more anxiety even as we spend time being aware of it and trying to fight it.

For every fear thought, a reminder.

99% of what I fear will never happen.

Why spend so much of my life waiting for it?

Our fear thoughts program our brains.  Putting fears into perspective retrains our brains and makes us more able to deal with anxiety in a world obsessed with fear.

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Coping with Failure

Failure is a rehearsal for future success.

Get beyond the pain to see the benefit.

You’ve learned something, now use it the next time.

Your ego is bruised but ego is vanity and vanity has little to do with success.

You’re discouraged – but if you really want it that discouragement will be temporary and will show you how badly you want to pursue your goal.

But I worked so hard – take a rest and appreciate your hidden advantage, your work ethic.

Sometimes the first plan is the worst plan – failure helps us hone it to make the next one a better idea.

Perseverance is the key to success.

Failure can help us see if we have it.

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One Sure Way to be Unhappy

To guarantee that you’ll be unhappy, try to change someone.

In spite of the desire to help people, save them, make them better or just offer your way of doing things, there is zero chance they will make permanent change.

I first heard this wisdom at a seminar with Dr. Amit Sood, the Mayo Clinic doctor, author and lecturer who has written extensively on relieving stress.

Not trying to change someone is as hard to do as another person changing because you want them to.

No real change can take place unless or until we want to make that change.

Alcoholics know this the hard way when things have to get so bad or they lose their family or their health.  And yet, some won’t even change then.

It will surely drive people away the more you try to change the way they do things or look at things.

Even when others ask for advice, they don’t want it.  What they want is for us to listen.

With zero chance to change another person – even for their own good in our opinion – the winning alternative is to accept them precisely the way they are.

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Control Freaks at Work

You can’t win against a control freak whether it is an associate or the boss.

If they have more power, they prevail.

You can make yourself miserable by trying to fight for some input but control freaks have to be in full charge or they are not happy.

One seemingly counterintuitive yet potent way to combat the control freak ruining the workplace is to do what they don’t expect.

Give them more control.

Ask them in detail how they want things done.

Pepper them with endless questions.

You may find that they will actually cede the details to you as long as they feel they are in charge.

This is a short-term workaround.

If you love your job, wait them out and hope they leave.

If it’s untenable, find a new job with less drama but there is no shortage of control freaks – there’s a good chance you will find more elsewhere.

To best a control freak, give them more control and they may call it a victory and cut you a break.

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Rewirement

You just can’t teach people to be happy.

They have to discover what delivers joy and it is usually not some big, expensive rich thing that many expect.

We often don’t know what makes us happy because we spend so much time dealing with that which doesn’t fulfill us.

Time off, meditation, a gratitude journal, getting in touch with those around us who are important – these are ways to avoid short-circuiting what really matters in our life.

Then, on to rewirement.

The changes that are required to set a new course.

We have to change our life’s circumstances.

Discover the things that deliver joy (have we even used the word “joy” lately?) 

Teach ourselves to be thankful.

To motivate ourselves to make some changes.

To know what those changes are and be dogged in pursuing them.

Re-wirement is the personal process of changing how we think about happiness.

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