Do you have the habit of worrying too much about the future and wondered how to stop this endless thought pattern of worry?
When we pay attention to our thoughts, we find that most of our time is spent either dabbling in the past or thinking about what is up ahead in the future.
Basically, “what happened” and “what might happen” takes up much of our mind space.
Enjoying the “present moment” while being totally free of the psychological limitations of time has become a rare occurrence.
While I have written a very detailed guide on How to Let Go of the Past, today we’ll discuss a bit about how to approach the worries and fearful thoughts of the future.
“What if things don’t go as I expect”
“What if that bad experience happens again”
“How will I handle that situation”
“I might get late”
“How will I face that person”
“That seems so difficult, how will I be able to do it”
Or thinking about the worst case scenarios regarding a particular thing.
All of this seem familiar? It’s safe to say that we all have gone through these kinds of thoughts at some point. Many of us go through them most of the days.
If any of this seems relatable to you, read on.
Have Faith That You’ll Be Okay
Faith and Worry cannot co-exist. Once you develop absolute faith, you automatically stop worrying about the future.
I remember being worried about anything and discussing it with my father, his response almost always would be, “Don’t worry, Everything will be okay”.
This might just feel like words of comfort and reassurance but as time went on, this became a powerful belief for me which later on turned into a source of courage and fearlessness.
Embed this belief into the deepest part of your mind.
Everything will be Okay, God-Willing. You’ll be fine, trust me.
Make a habit of saying this to yourself.
“God does not burden any soul with more than it can bear”
This is a very comforting and reassuring verse from the Holy Quran. God, Himself has promised that you will NOT be burdened by anything which is out of your capacity.
So rest assured that ANYTHING that’ll happen, will be under your capacity. You will be capable enough to handle it.
Just reflect over this for a minute and allow it to sink in deeper.
There’s another promise of God and He repeats it twice!
“So truly where there is hardship there is also ease. Truly where there is hardship there is also ease.”
– Quran [94:5-6]
This suggests that with every challenge, every problem, there is definitely ease and solution to it.
Have deep faith that God will guide you through it and you’ll do fine. A sign of great faith is that the worry is greatly reduced to a minimum and calmness takes over.
So anytime you’re feeling worried or anxious, check-in with yourself. Are you really putting your absolute faith in God? Then just accept and allow yourself to fully let go of the worries as you begin to trust God’s plan.
Develop Personal Strategies That’ll Help You Cope In The Future
Let’s face it. Nothing in life is permanent. No matter where you are in life right now, there will be great times and there will be challenging times.
It is important that you develop empowering habits and positive coping methods now so if something challenging does come in the future, you’ll have something to hold on to.
What do I mean by this? It simply means that you must have certain habits, hobbies, rituals, or activities which you can use to get out of negative states of mind and into a positive, creative, and productive state of being.
A few examples would be:
- Connect through Prayers (salah). Make it a regular habit.
“And seek help through patience and prayer, and indeed, it (prayer) is difficult except for those who are humbly submissive [to Allah ]”
– Quran [2:45]
- Make regular exercise routine (Running, yoga, weight training, whatever suits you).
- Study Quran meaningfully and connect with it.
- Hiking/Walk in nature.
- Read books on personal development.
- Meet-up with a supportive friend.
- Get Life Coaching.
- Develop some creative hobbies like painting, sketching, writing, gardening, designing of some sort, baking, learning a new language or skill, etc. Be open to explore different avenues and see which ones get you into the most creative state.
Such empowering routine habits will serve as armor against challenges. Incorporate them in your regular life, even when everything is okay.
One of the biggest mistakes many people make is that we give up on such activities either when we are too happy or too low.
Either we mistakenly perceive all such things as meaningless in front of our difficulties. Or when we are happy, we tend to think that we don’t need these anymore.
When in fact these empowering habits and daily rituals could be a way of great strength and stability during life’s challenges, God-Willing.
Focus On Things That Are Under Your Influence
The reality that we often seem to forget is that we cannot directly control the external circumstances or people. We cannot even fully control our own children.
Yes, we might have authority over some people, be it in our family life or professionally, but the fact is we cannot control them. Same goes for the external circumstances.
We cannot directly control what will happen in the future. Nor can we control the economy or society. Can we?
Disharmony erupts when we try hard to have everything under our control and expect everything to be the way WE want it to be.
The only thing that is in your control is YOURSELF. How you think, what you Focus on and what you choose to do.
People often say, “I have tried everything but nothing seem to work”. Sounds familiar? Most of us have said this phrase at some point in life.
Most People give up too easily and are not persistent enough. They try something a little bit and then skip to something else, never allowing things to mature fully and reap the fruit.
Eventually, if you are consistent enough, who you are and what you choose to do will begin to influence your circumstances and the people around you. It’s just the matter of who is the most stubborn and resilient, You or Your Problems and Circumstances.
The past is No more, the future is not yet. The only thing you have is the Present, the NOW.
The only way you can influence your future is by focusing on the NOW. What you choose to do today.
Remember, the state of worry or stress is usually not a productive state. We only damage the quality of our life but over-thinking about the future.
If you really want to do something about the future, instead of worrying, take some action Now towards betterment.
If you are doing your part right, giving your 100%, and Not violating the laws of life, you can stop worrying about the future.
Take the example of a student who prepared well the entire year for the exams with focus, discipline, and smartness.
As the exams approach he is not worried much. A bit of temporary nervousness is okay and natural. But inside, that student is confident and at peace.
He knows that he has been doing his part the best he could, now he leaves the rest into God’s hands.
He is certain that God’s Laws of Universe never fail. If he is in harmony with them, he’ll be okay.
And even if he does falter, that’s okay too. For him, there are No Failures, only feedback. He knows that even if things don’t go the way he expects, he can take feedback from it and learn some life lessons that will enhance his wisdom.
He plans, but he is not obsessed or attached to his plans because he knows that ultimately he must trust God’s Plan.
There is always great wisdom behind God’s plans that our limited intellect might not be able to grasp at the moment.
Trust God’s plan. Trust God’s timings.
Until next time.