Isn’t there something special about the start of autumn? It comes to us after summers rest and recuperation, with a clean and glimmering hope of something better. Now, this can obviously be said for any day of the year, but this is as good as any opportunity to start again, don’t you think?
This month I was inspired by the start of school and a deep conversation about stress and worry. Hopefully, my thoughts can give you something that frees you to have that fresh start…
Your Life is a Masterpiece, discover it!
Quote of the month
" Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow, it empties today of its strength. "
- Corrie ten Boom
Off to a good start?
There is something special with the start of the school year. Especially this week when it was the first time as parent. Already a few days before you start mulling things over. Will he get a good start? Find new friends? How can we help make it fun and inspiring? Our minds can quite easily start revving up and worrying seems like caring and rational thing to do.
As adults we can find that it’s the same thing with coming back to work after the vacation. We find that we are a little rusty doing what felt so natural before the break. On top of that we get new directives, fast approaching dead-lines and ever increasing expectations of productivity. Sooner than we would like we are back in our old patterns and stress, anxiety and worry creeps in like an unwanted party crasher.
This is more common than any of us would like to admit. At least judging by the clients that I coach and all the people that I meet when I’m out doing seminars for businesses. Because the questions that pop up during breaks, when what really bothers people is brought up, is mostly related to a desire to decrease stress and worry.
Which is why I’m using this first coaching letter of the fall to address that. All in the hope that five minutes of reflecting on it will make a difference in some way.
First step is therefore to understand that nobody walks around doing things that doesn’t make sense to them on some level. As soon as something truly stops making sense for us even old, broken in behaviors fall off us as naturally as yellow autumn leaves drop off a tree. Now, out of experience I can almost here some of you say: – That’s just not true for me! I am fully aware how my worry and excessive brooding over things negatively influences everything from my sleep to my productivity and over all quality of life. I see nothing sensible in my worry and would do anything to make it stop.
A few follow up questions make their innocent misunderstanding show up in the following: ”Well, a little worry is still a good thing because otherwise you would miss important things”, ”Only people who don’t care stay calm when bad stuff happens”, ”Without stress you don’t get going to meet your dead-lines”, ”What kind of psychopath are you if you don’t even care how things turn out?”. So, except for being more focused, a nicer person who really cares and performing better you don’t see any benefits to being worried, stressed and anxious? 🙂
What they miss, for example, is that worry is completely separate from caring. Caring is the default setting for any human being. You can pretend not to care or give a shit, but you still do. The difference is that in a low state of mind your caring comes out as stress, worry and anxiety and we problems that don’t even exist. It can even go so far that if we don’t see any problems we think that we must be missing something. In calm and clear state of mind you innate caring comes out as focus, creativity and wanting to do what you can to help.
In other words, worried thinking that you take seriously creates a state of mind from which everything looks worse than it is. What we innocently miss is that most of these problems wouldn’t even be there if our heads were clear. Then it wouldn’t make sense to us to stress to ”prove”, to ourselves or others, that we care. No matter how much we could have sworn that we were legitimately worried because of all these problems we were seeing. We start to understand that if it weren’t for our thinking in the moment we wouldn’t have been neither stressed nor worried.
Without that we continue because we think that we can handle ”things” better the more we think about them. When we do realize the truth and see that it’s the other way around, it stops making sense on a deep level and we stop taking our worried thinking seriously. Almost instantaneously we find ourselves mentally clear and having access to all the creative resources we were born with.
Therefore, worry, stress and anxiety will melt away as you see that if you’re having a ”negative” feeling it’s only because your current thinking is blocking out your natural clarity. No matter how convinced you might be of the opposite. Your feeling is always guiding you in the right direction once you understand this. That insight alone might make your thinking look less sensible and thus easier to let go of. Hopefully, a great start of learning to the semester even for an adult, right?
This is a little gem of a book. Michael asked me to write a testimonial for the book and I’ll use it here and hope that it persuades you to not only buy the book but to read it immediately:
”Anyone who has been touched by what Michael Neill is pointing to in this book is eternally grateful to whomever nudged them in this direction. For me that person happens to be Michael back in 2009. Here he beautifully shares the human ”ground zero” of how we all create our experience of life. In a simple, yet profound, way that gives you a chance for a better understanding of human psychology. Don’t be surprised if it has you falling deeply in love with your life and living all over again. That’s what’s on offer on the pages of this book. So, don’t just read it. Let the words on its pages shower your mind like your favorite music and chances are you too will be seeing something wonderful that really makes a difference for you. No, really, it’s not just what everyone is saying. I cannot state this any stronger from my heart, hopefully, to yours – this is it!”
You can find more books under Suggested Reading
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As an integral part of living my vision "to inspire, educate and make a difference in enough peoples private and professional lives to make a positive difference in the world", I write and distribute a free monthly coaching letter. In these I share various ideas, thoughts and insights that I think can be of value for all of you who are interested in getting the absolute best out of life.Read more