It’s the middle of the work week. You’re watching your favorite weekly sitcom with your family, or maybe you’re at the gym trying to blow off some steam. Yet one thing remains constant – your stress. Holding a conversation is exhausting, and the relationships with those closest to you feel forced. Regardless of what you do to distract yourself, the laundry list of tasks that need to be completed are haunting you day in and day out.
Here are 5 quotes from Dale Carnegie’s book, How to Stop Worrying & Start Living, that will support you on the days you feel defeated by your stress.
1. “Two men looked out from prison bars, one saw the mud, the other saw stars.”
Are you letting the fear of not accomplishing the task at hand blind you from seeing the end result? At times, our task list might feel like a prison. How we perceive our stress is the key to overcoming the negative emotions that arise with creeping deadlines. Rather than putting all of your energy into what is getting in your way, focus on what you can and will achieve in the long run.
2. “Let’s not allow ourselves to be upset by small things we should despise and forget. Remember ‘Life is too short to be little’.”
You’re stuck in traffic. The person on the elevator didn’t hold the door for you. Although these things are minor inconveniences, you’re infuriated by the lack of control you have over these situations. Stress will surely test your patience, how you react to the small stuff defines how much power you allow your stress to have.
3. “…when the fierce, burning winds blow over our lives-and we cannot prevent them-let us, too, accept the inevitable. And then get busy and pick up the pieces.”
We can’t control our clients leaving us for a competitor, or prevent our team members from making huge mistakes. When we approach inevitable situations with a clear and decisive mindset, we are able to reduce our panic and promptly put out the fires others created. As Pablo Neruda said, “You can cut all the flowers but you cannot keep Spring from coming.”
4. “The secret of being miserable is to have the leisure to bother about whether you are happy or not.” Keep active, keep busy!”
Distracting yourself from what needs to be done creates more stress, which causes you to create more distractions, and the cycle repeats itself in an infinite loop. How do you stop your reoccurring stress? Acknowledge that neglecting what needs to be done is only a short term payoff. Buckle down and get it done. Sure, an extra hour at the office a day is unappealing, but the long term satisfaction and pride in yourself is worth far more than the extra time you invested.
5. “Today is our most precious possession. It is our only sure possession.”
We cannot change what happened yesterday, and we cannot control what life will throw our way tomorrow. Today is the only day we have control over. So why allow stress to have power over our only surest possession? Every day you wake up, remind yourself of how amazing it is that you have the opportunity to accomplish so much within 24 hours. Your peace of mind tomorrow is directly dependent upon your attitude today.