I worry myself to death. I worry all the time. About what? I’m not sure. A million things. And they all start with two words:
These two words mean that “it” has not actually happened (not yet!, my mind interjects). But I still worry.
When I was in India, our teacher at the ashram looked at us (all Westerners) and said:
What are you all worried about? We give you a roof, we give you food, you have nothing to do or think about. You study, you do yoga, you do your selfless service. Nothing you need to take care of.
But he was right. I looked around and I remember we were all looking pretty worried. In the place on earth that’s probably as close to paradise as it gets. We were worried about home. What if something had happened?
There were no cell phones and no internet at the ashram. However, there was a landline that family and friends could use – in case. Yet, we all worried.
It is hard to appreciate how much headspace this takes. How much energy. Worry overshadows our days, it preys on our minds. All. The. Time.
The mind rambles into worries of the past, and anxieties for the future. That tires you. Action doesn’t tire you. Action can never tire you. […] If you don’t find rest in action, you will never rest by getting out of action. In fact, you’re working for weekend and vacations. But if you don’t know how to control your mind and act in the present, you will always feel tired.
Do you want proof? Examine your own children. Your children are never tired. They are bristling with activity. Because of the simple fact that children have no worries of the past and anxieties for the future, they’re happy. But you all have the worries of the past and anxieties for the future, and it tires and fatigues you. So you need rest. It’s as simple as that.
We don’t need weekends, days off and holidays to recover from what we do. We need them to recover from the state of mind we’re in – day in, day out.
I do try to live in the present. The present excludes worry about what is past and anxiety about what might come. Life is simpler that way. But it does feel like a long recovery.
How do you deal with worry? Do you think we worry too much, in a society where the majority of people have access to all basic necessities?