My Facebook wall is flooded with articles and images that convey the same message: “Stop worrying. You are exactly where you’re meant to be.” “Stop worrying. It’s all going to work out in the end.” “Stop worrying. This was meant to be.” “Stop worrying. God has a plan for you.” You get the gist. You’ve probably read a bunch, too.
One article down, I thought to myself, Okay, that’s encouraging. I should tamp down my over thinking. Two articles down, I tell myself, Well, it’s good to know I’m not alone in feeling lost and clueless. But by the fifth article, I begin to question myself, Am I just supposed to wait for something to happen? For God’s grand plan to take place? By the seventh article, my skepticism had spiked even further. Was this really good advice – stop worrying? After much reflection, the answer is NO.
Why do we worry? We worry because we want to do something, be somewhere, be something. Worry is a prerequisite to action. It indicates that we’re moving ahead in life. Not worrying, on the other hand, reflects stagnation. If you have nothing to worry about, ask yourself whether you’re setting your goals too low. Introspect on whether you’re underselling yourself and your potential. And unless, the answer is, “I’ve met all my life goals, lived life to the fullest and I’m ready to die,” you’re not worrying enough. The trouble is not when we worry, it’s when we over-worry.
When the worrying leads to inaction, when it proves to be a hindrance in our plans, a roadblock to success – that’s when the ‘Stop worrying’ advice applies. And then too, only to a certain extent. Not worrying at all leaves us as bystanders of our lives, stationary, awaiting an external force to give us a push. That’s not how life works. We need to constantly move towards our goals, striving for what we want to achieve. A side-effect of that is a little stress and a little worry. It’s normal and healthy.
So the next time you have nothing to worry about, you should worry about that…but not too much! 🙂