If you don’t worry, you’re practically not human.
But, why be human… when you can be superhuman? Here’s what superhumans do: they don’t worry – neither about what they can nor what they can’t control.
One may ask, how is it possible not to worry? It’s easier than you think; the process takes deliberate effort, but it’ll dramatically re-shape your life.
Use a worry list, old-fashioned hard work, and your phone’s calendar.
The Worry List
Here’s what you can do: create your worry list. Yes, it’s exactly how it sounds. Grab a pen and paper, and write down all the worries you have as they come to you; no matter how big or small, write them down. Don’t get fancy and overcomplicate it – write in plain language, exactly as you would think about it in your head.
What writing your worries down on paper does is, it helps you articulate and visualize exactly what it is that’s worrying you. Then, as soon as you’re done, mark each worry as either controllable (C) or uncontrollable (U).
For each U, you’ve determined that it’s fundamentally out of your hands and you need to learn to trust the universe; if it ends up working out for you, fantastic – if not, it’s almost always the case that there’s an unforeseen opportunity on your horizon, and what you were originally hoping for would’ve got in the way.
However, it’s a different story for the Cs – this is where the fun begins.
The Hard Work
Work. For every C, lay out the exact steps you need to take to accomplish it. You don’t have the right to worry about Cs when you know the way forward; that only indicates you’re lazy, and if that’s the case then you deserve to worry.
however, if you need help figuring out the right steps, do one of two things: talk to someone, or ask for help; these are two different things – the former predominantly involves talking while the latter listening.
Sometimes, all you need is the chance to think out loud, and having someone there as a soundboard allows you to articulate and sanity check your thought process.
Also, ask for help from friends, family, colleagues; you don’t have to figure it all out on your own. “He who travels fastest travels alone; he who travels furthest travels with others.”
Then, once you know the way forward, you need to make a choice: is whatever’s worrying you worth the amount of effort you’re going to need to deploy to overcome it? If so, bon voyage! If not, then find a way to mitigate the situation – delegate, say no, etc. – because it’s not going to disappear on its own.
It may not seem that simple, but it really is.
If you’re reading this article, you probably have a million things on your plate at the moment. And that’s absolutely fine – while you have a lot of Cs on your list, you don’t have to solve each and every one of them by tomorrow in order to rid yourself of worry.
What you do have to do, though, is set a time for when you’ll get to them: pull out your phone calendar and block in a time for each C. Now, it’s a pledge on your calendar – a dedicated block of time in which you know you will get the job done.
Then, most importantly – whatever you do – do not miss that meeting. Pretend as if it were a meeting with someone else; but it’s even more important than that – it’s a meeting with yourself. You can’t reschedule and you can’t postpone it – you’re committed. Respect your word to yourself, because you can’t expect others to when you yourself don’t. Your word is everything.
Why You’re Superhuman
The point to ridding your mind of worry after worry is that it clears up your brain capacity. We all have a limited amount of mental production power for the day, and the less you worry, the more capacity you have to produce great work that leaves an impact on the world around you. You worrying less is quite literally a contribution to humanity, and that – my friend – is what makes you superhuman.
Molham Krayem, Associate Consultant, Bain & Company