How to stop worrying

Published on Aug 7, 2020

Today, I started rereading Dale Carnegie's classic "How to stop worrying and start living".  Here are my take-aways:

  • Part I: Live in day-tight compartments. Don't worry about yesterday, nor tomorrow, focus on how you'll manage today until you go to bed. Just like in a hourglass with sand, just one corn goes through at a time, so it is with our tasks. We can only focus on one thing at any time. 
  • Part II: Think about worries by writing down the worst case scenario, then accept it if it needs to be. Then, focus all your energy on how you can prevent the worst case scenario from happening. By going through this exercise one can think rationally again and energy is freed up to do something about it. This exercise is almost exactly the same as Tim Ferriss' fear-setting exercise, except that Tim suggests to think about how to repair oneself once the worst case happened instead of accepting it. 
  • Part IV: Focus on what you can do for others, do a good deed and by making somebody smile you'll make yourself happier and tend to forget your own worries.

He mentions several great examples, from Greek philosophers like Socrates, or psychologists like Jung or business men and politicians like Benjamin Franklin and how they (recommended to) deal with worries. 

I like best that he has countless examples of people from the classes he taught that experimented with and applied his rules and shared their stories how they overcame their worries.