Stop Worrying

Will my worries ever sail? ©FrogDiva Photography

I worried a lot.
Will the garden grow,
will the rivers flow in the right direction,
will the earth turn as it was taught,
and if not, how shall I correct it?

Was I right,
Was I wrong,
Will I be forgiven,
Can I do better?

Will I ever be able to sing,
Even the sparrows can do it, and I am, well,

Is my eyesight fading,
Or am I just imagining it,
Am I going to get rheumatism, lockjaw, dementia?

Finally I saw that worrying had come to nothing.
And gave it up.
And took my old body
And went out into the morning
And sang.

-Mary Oliver, I Worried

My breathing almost came to a standstill when I found this poem. It was as if it was meant to speak to the deepest part of my soul. I do indeed worry, about far too many details, about all the things I did wrong, the things I did right but am still unsure of, the future, the present, and the list is goes on. You know what? Worrying doesn’t get me anywhere and just raises my blood pressure.

I live dangerously and take huge risks in my life (the older I get the bigger the risk), but I am learning to take those risks without worrying about the outcome. Whatever happens will happen, and I will deal with it as it comes along, so there is no point in worrying about it.

Make a plan, prepare a contingency, and think quickly of an alternative if you get stuck. Most importantly, believe in your own strength.


  1. Everyone worries. Worrying can even be helpful when it spurs you to take action and solve a problem. But if you re preoccupied with what ifs and worst-case scenarios, worry becomes a problem. Unrelenting anxious thoughts and fears can be paralyzing. They can sap your emotional energy, send your anxiety levels soaring, and interfere with your daily life. But chronic worrying is a mental habit that can be broken. You can train your brain to stay calm and look at life from a more balanced, less fearful perspective.

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