How many times have you worried about things that never came to pass? I call these ghost worries and I’ve had my share in the past. As the Bobby McFerrin song goes “Don’t Worry Be Happy“. I have to admit, I enjoy being positive and happy. It’s much better than the alternative. Here’s how I approach it.
Be Happy: Free Your Mind
We all get worked up about things in life. Our job is a big contributor. We think about all of the things that can go wrong with customers, peers, and management. If you are running your own business, you are probably worrying about revenue, paying your employees, the next sale, and your exit strategy.
When we built our business, I had a laundry list of things I regularly worried about that never came true. If only I would have had the fortitude to put those thoughts to the back of my mind, it would have saved a lot of strife. Fast forward 16 years after I started my business, I realize how unfounded that worry was. I am happy, it all worked out OK.
Since then, I’ve learned to free my mind of worry. If worry begins to bottle up, here is how I address it:
- Find a quiet spot and sit with my eyes closed
- Focus on removing all negative thoughts, be mindful of happy thoughts
- Stay still for 10 minutes practicing removing the negative thoughts
Be Happy: Hang Out with Positive People
People can bring drama into your life or they can be incredibly encouraging. Why deal with drama? Life’s too short. So how do you find people that are positive and happy? Start by being positive yourself. Here’s how:
- When you see people, give them a smile and say hello
- Do something special for someone without expecting anything in return
- Listen intently when talking with friends, put your phone away
- Provide advice when asked and be supportive
- Be truly happy for your friends when great things happen in their life
You’ll find that the more positive energy you emit, the more that is returned to you. Before long, you will be attracting only positive people, so the negative people will simply fall by the wayside.
Don’t Worry About Things Outside of Your Control
We all have spears of control. For example, I can control my health by not smoking, exercising, and eating healthy. However, some things are totally outside of my control. For example, I can’t control taxes, how a particular senator votes or how a specific person feels about me (in fact, it’s really none of my business how someone else thinks of me, it’s their own personal thought that belongs only to them).
For things I can’t control, I don’t spend time worrying about them. Complaining to my neighbor or friend about taxes, the government or a rumor I heard about someone is a waste of time. I can’t change it, therefore, I’m not going to spend energy worrying about it.
Instead, I spend my time focusing on things I can control: my health, being happy, my financial situation, and my relationships. Those are things that deserve my attention.
Tell Me About Your Experiences
Drop me a comment to let me know how you’ve focused on being happy and becoming worry free. What tips have you find that worked well? How has it affected your life?
About this Blog
Steve and his wife built a software company, sold it and retired early. Steve enjoys blogging about lifestyle freedom, financial independence and technology. If you like this blog, subscribe here to get an email each time he posts.
If you like this post, you might also like these prior posts:
- Wanderlust began 26 years ago
- This is why you don’t have a mentor
- Piggy-back off other people’s success