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The Biggest Waste of Time in Your Life Uncovered

The Biggest Waste of Time in Your Life Uncovered

What’s the biggest waste of time in your life? I’m sure for some it’s watching too much television, for many it’s spending too much time on the internet, but though those are significant time wasters for sure they’re not mine. The biggest waste of time in my life is worrying. If you’re not a worrier, you can’t possibly understand, but if you are, you’re out there nodding your head as you read this.

Time spent worrying, is time spent not living. Worrying by its very nature takes us out of the present moment and into the past, ruminating over what has already happened or into the future, projecting what might possibly come to pass. Worry keeps us trapped in our heads and keeps us from truly enjoying our life, as it’s unfolding. Some planning is necessary, taking action mandatory, but worrying…optional.

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Why are we wasting so much time worrying?

We spend time worrying about losing our jobs, or not being able to find one, instead of enjoying the job we do have or calmly contemplating how we could improve our work life or exploring better career options, or spending our time furthering our education and improving our skills.

We spend time wringing our hands about not having enough money, not being able to pay our bills and not being able to buy the things we need and enjoy, instead of being grateful for what money we do have and enjoying the things that are already in our lives.

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We worry about never finding true love or losing the love we have, instead of learning to love ourselves more and nurturing our relationships so that they are deep, lasting, and fulfilling. If we’re wasting time lamenting over a lack of love, or loss of love, then we’re not spending time paying attention to the people who are already present in our lives.

We waste a considerable amount of time worrying about what the rest of the world thinks about us. We spend precious time courting favorable opinions, comparing ourselves to others, pursuing approval and worrying that we will never get it. How much better if this time were spent actually doing the things we want, rather than thinking about what other people’s reactions will be?

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We needlessly spend time worrying about unimportant things. We get bent out of shape over tiny insults; we agonize over decisions that won’t matter next week. We often spend more time worrying about what we’re going to wear, where we want to eat or what we’re going to say, than we do enjoying our meal, experiencing what we’re doing or having the conversations.

I can’t speak for everyone else, not even all of the other worriers out there, but I know that I spend a considerable amount of time worrying, ruminating, and anxiously projecting. That time would be much better spent focusing on the work at hand, paying attention to the people around me now, and reveling in the experiences that are happening in this very moment. As I said before, time spent worrying, is time spent not living in the life we have at this very moment in time. That is truly the biggest time waster of all.

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Featured photo credit:  picture of pensive businesswoman via Shutterstock

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Last Updated on September 20, 2018

How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

Being in a hurry all the time drains your energy. Your work and routine life make you feel overwhelmed. Getting caught up in things beyond your control stresses you out…

If you’d like to stay calm and cool in stressful situations, put the following 8 steps into practice:

1. Breathe

The next time you’re faced with a stressful situation that makes you want to hurry, stop what you’re doing for one minute and perform the following steps:

  • Take five deep breaths in and out (your belly should come forward with each inhale).
  • Imagine all that stress leaving your body with each exhale.
  • Smile. Fake it if you have to. It’s pretty hard to stay grumpy with a goofy grin on your face.

Feel free to repeat the above steps every few hours at work or home if you need to.

2. Loosen up

After your breathing session, perform a quick body scan to identify any areas that are tight or tense. Clenched jaw? Rounded shoulders? Anything else that isn’t at ease?

Gently touch or massage any of your body parts that are under tension to encourage total relaxation. It might help to imagine you’re in a place that calms you: a beach, hot tub, or nature trail, for example.

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3. Chew slowly

Slow down at the dinner table if you want to learn to be patient and lose weight. Shoveling your food down as fast as you can is a surefire way to eat more than you need to (and find yourself with a bellyache).

Be a mindful eater who pays attention to the taste, texture, and aroma of every dish. Chew slowly while you try to guess all of the ingredients that were used to prepare your dish.

Chewing slowly will also reduce those dreadful late-night cravings that sneak up on you after work.

4. Let go

Cliche as it sounds, it’s very effective.

The thing that seems like the end of the world right now?

It’s not. Promise.

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Stressing and worrying about the situation you’re in won’t do any good because you’re already in it, so just let it go.

Letting go isn’t easy, so here’s a guide to help you:

21 Things To Do When You Find It Hard To Let Go

5. Enjoy the journey

Focusing on the end result can quickly become exhausting. Chasing a bold, audacious goal that’s going to require a lot of time and patience? Split it into several mini-goals so you’ll have several causes for celebration.

Stop focusing on the negative thoughts. Giving yourself consistent positive feedback will help you grow patience, stay encouraged, and find more joy in the process of achieving your goals.

6. Look at the big picture

The next time you find your stress level skyrocketing, take a deep breath, and ask yourself:

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Will this matter to me…

  • Next week?
  • Next month?
  • Next year?
  • In 10 years?

Hint: No, it won’t.

I bet most of the stuff that stresses you wouldn’t matter the next week, maybe not even the next day.

Stop agonizing over things you can’t control because you’re only hurting yourself.

7. Stop demanding perfection of yourself

You’re not perfect and that’s okay. Show me a person who claims to be perfect and I’ll show you a dirty liar.

Demanding perfection of yourself (or anybody else) will only stress you out because it just isn’t possible.

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8. Practice patience every day

Below are a few easy ways you can practice patience every day, increasing your ability to remain calm and cool in times of stress:

  • The next time you go to the grocery store, get in the longest line.
  • Instead of going through the drive-thru at your bank, go inside.
  • Take a long walk through a secluded park or trail.

Final thoughts

Staying calm in stressful situations is possible, all you need is some daily practice.

Taking deep breaths and eat mindfully are some simple ways to train your brain to be more patient. But changing the way you think of a situation and staying positive are most important in keeping cool whenever you feel overwhelmed and stressful.

Featured photo credit: Brooke Cagle via unsplash.com

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