Social media: one stop shop for photo stalking, exercise validation, cooking videos, cat meme’s and inspirational quotes. There are so many inspirational quotes that many defeat their own purpose. I gloss over most of them. But one caught my attention, can’t remember where I saw it to link to, but in a gist it said “don’t bet against yourself.”
Hardly ground breaking, perhaps not even innovative, but it was something I had never really thought about. Taking bets against myself, actually choosing the other side over me? Why on earth would I ever do that?
Well as it turns out I do and often. I worry. I get anxious. I dwell. I turn over the possibilities, mostly only considering the negative ones, over and over in my head. I say it is too much. Too hard. Everything is bound to go wrong. All of these are taking bets against myself. Every single time.
When I read the quote on social media, I was in the middle of a summer of completely overhauling the house. The tasks I was taking on were huge, there was even one afternoon when I chain sawed down a tree in our backyard – all by myself.
That is when it hit me. I’m the winning horse. The bets need to be on me, not against me.
Sure there are going to be moments in life where real worry is warranted. Real concerns or anxious also warranted. But most of the time, I need to try and actively set it aside.
I say “try” because I really believe the mindset is a hard thing to change. I come from generations of worry. Worry is in my genetic code. My grandmother worries. My mother worries. I am next in line to the throne of worry.
But change can be achieved in small steps. Each time I can feel the worry rise up I take a deep breath and tell myself to stop it. Every time the negative thoughts start to spread their wings I get myself in such a flurry thinking of all possible positives instead.
Most of the time worry achieves nothing. It really does. Most situations sort themselves, often for the better and in ways we hardly expect, and worry only serves to bring us down. In times when worry is the default, these are times when we need to lift ourselves up the most and stop taking bets against ourselves.
I hope for some of you this post goes without saying, that you are nodding along and saying welcome to the light side Josefa. But for some of you I hope the words “don’t bet against yourself” plant themselves somewhere firmly in the back of your mind and rise up as a reminder next time the default worry kicks in.
If you were standing in front of that bookies office, money in hand, ready to hand over your cash, would you really take the odds against yourself? Would you?