Dealing with Life’s “What ifs”

So I’m going through a thing. A thing that I’m not really ready to talk about yet.

We have a funny way of wanting to plan for events that have not and could quite possibly never happen. I like to call these life’s “what ifs.” People like to make escape routes in case something bad happens… What if I lose my job? What if my significant other/husband/mother/brother dies? What if I get sick and can’t work anymore? Or they like to daydream about good things to come… What will my wedding look like? What would I buy if I won the lottery? What will my super awesome career be like?

While daydreaming can be fun, stressing about bad things that haven’t even happened yet is no way to spend your days. Unfortunately, it’s really easy to get caught up in a potential downward spiral of events that can be set off by one bad thing happening. Take, for example, if you fail an exam. First, you failed the exam. Next, that grade will make you fail the class. Then, you won’t be allowed to graduate because that class is required for your major. Before you know it, you’re worrying about where the best places to go dumpster diving are, since you will, after all, be homeless because you didn’t graduate and couldn’t get any sort of job without a college degree. In reality, you failed the exam and had to get at least an 80 on the next one in order to pass the class, which you did, of course, because you’re so smart. See how that all worked out?

Not worrying about impending doom is a lot easier said than done. I might be a pessimist, but for me, it’s hard not to imagine the worst case scenario for things. So that’s what I’m trying desperately to do. For now, I’m trying to focus on living in the moment. Not necessarily “seizing the day,” but just simply being in the here and now and not worrying about whatever might happen in the future.

Ok, this might happen. But it hasn’t happened yet. And right now, I don’t even know if it WILL happen. So I’m just going to forget about it and deal with it if it actually does happen.

There, I said it. Now to just actually do it…


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