Can you be worry free this year?

My dear friend,

Have you ever worried about worry? Well…it is not a good thing to do. In fact, worry ages us faster than almost anything else. Can you believe it? Worry can produce ulcers, arthritis, headaches, premature heart disease, adrenal fatigue, anxiety, and so many other negative physical effects on our bodies.

Maria Atwood, the author of this article, read a book written in 1944 by Dale Carnegie, “How to Stop Worrying and Start Living” which she says “transformed herself almost overnight.” (I did look and you can still purchase Mr. Carnegie’s book. It is in my Amazon cart as I am writing this.) 

One thing that Mr. Carnegie stresses is the difference between worry and concern.

“Worry is the incessant, ruminative speculation of what might go wrong – an anticipation of chaos. This may happen because of a past mishap: What if I insulted her? What if I don’t find an apartment? What if ….? It’s a form of self-torment, best described as WHAT IF thinking.”

“Concern, on the other hand, is a calculated consideration and assessment of actual danger. Whereas worrying anticipates problems and things going awry (loss of control), concern is more fact-based and geared toward problem-solving. Which do you think serves you best when facing a life challenge: dealing with the fact (being concerned), or dealing with fiction (worrying)?”

As Maria interviewed her clients over the past year she found most of their daily thoughts were fear based and feeling threatened. Our minds cannot differentiate between fantasy and reality. Even just thoughts of worry will affect our bodies physically. If we want to develop a mental attitude that will bring us peace and happiness, here is a good recommendation. “Think and act cheerfully, and you will feel cheerful.”

The Serenity Prayer of the12-step program is a great example of how to face each day and sometimes each moment. “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference.”

And for additional support and encouragement, I am including the “Just for Today” passage. This rendition is by Sybyl Partridge. 


1-Just for today I will be happy. This assumes that Abraham Lincoln’s quote is true, “most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.” Happiness is from within; it is not a matter of externals. 

2-Just for today I will try to adjust myself to what is, and not try to adjust everything to my own desires. I will take my family, my business, and my luck as they come and fit myself to them. 

3-Just for today I will take care of my body. I will exercise it, care for it, nourish it, not abuse nor neglect it, so that it will be a perfect machine for my bidding. 

4-Just for today I will strengthen my mind. I will learn something useful. I will not be a mental loafer. I will read something that requires effort, thought, and concentration. 

5-Just for today I will exercise my soul in three ways; I will do somebody a good turn and not get found out. I will do at least two things I don’t want to do as William James suggests, just for exercise. 

6-Just for today I will be agreeable. I will look as well as I can, dress as becomingly as possible, talk low, act courteously, be liberal with praise, criticize not at all, nor fault with anything and not try to regulate nor improve anyone. 

7-Just for today I will try to live through this day only, not to tackle my whole life problem at once. I can do things for twelve hours that would appall me if I had to keep them up for a lifetime. 

8-Just for today I will have a program. I will write down what I expect to do every hour. I may not follow it exactly, but I will have it… It will eliminate two pests, hurry and indecision. 

9-Just for today I will have a quiet half hour all by myself and relax. In this half hour sometimes I will think of God, so as to get a little more perspective into my life.

10-Just for today I will be unafraid, especially I will not be afraid to be happy, to enjoy what is beautiful, to love and to believe that those I love, love me.

As I was typing through this passage, I was thinking about how the world would be if we even followed one of these each day. I am going to focus on one a month and see if I can make it a habit before I move on to the next. You will have to check up on me to see how I am doing. 

Just for today, I hope you have one good moment! Much love and gratitude,


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